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1,200 employees at NYU Winthrop vote to join SEIU Local 1199

Some workers at NYU Winthrop Hospital in Mineola

Some workers at NYU Winthrop Hospital in Mineola have voted to unionize.  Credit: NYU Winthrop Hospital

About 1,200 workers at NYU Winthrop Hospital will join a health care union with a large presence on Long Island after employees last week voted overwhelmingly to join the organization.

The union, Service Employees International Union, Local 1199, said on Monday that employees at the Mineola hospital voted 817 to 142 to join.  

The union said employees who were eligible to join included nursing assistants and dietary aides. The agreement does not include doctors or registered nurses. The hospital has a total of 9,600 workers, officials said.

The union didn't specify when the workers will recieve the union benefits, which they said included no-cost health care, a  pension, as well as childcare and education benefits. 

NYU Winthrop, formerly Winthrop University Hospital, officially merged with the Manhattan-based health care system NYU Langone earlier this summer. Winthrop has been affiliated with NYU since 2017.

“We respect the National Labor Relations Board process and will continue to work in the best interests of our staff and our patients," NYU Winthrop said in a statement sent to Newsday.

SEIU said NYU Langone employees at other facilities in the health system are already members of the union, covered by an existing contract.

"The newly organized Winthrop workers will be entitled to the benefits of this agreement since Winthrop is now part of NYU," the union said in a statement.

Candace Greenidge, a nursing assistant at Winthrop, added in the statement that “I have three kids and I’m looking forward to the childcare benefits I will receive. I’m also eligible for the pension and having strong benefits when I retire is really important for me and my family."

SEIU Local 1199 United Healthcare Workers East, which says it is the largest health care union in the nation, represents more than 250,000 health care workers in New York state and over 450,000 members throughout the East Coast. 

Its members also work at other regional health systems with a presence on Long Island, including Northwell Health and Mount Sinai, according to the union's website.

SEIU 1199 was founded in 1932 as a New York City drugstore workers’ union.

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