New Ballot Initiative Would Raise Pay For Arizona Hospital Workers

By Bridget Dowd
Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
Published: Monday, August 26, 2019 - 8:17am
Updated: Tuesday, August 27, 2019 - 9:18am

The California branch of the Service Employees International Union wants Arizona voters to force hospitals to pay their workers more. An initiative drive being launched today would mandate that everyone working at a hospital get an immediate 5% pay hike.

If the ballot measure is approved in 2020, those workers would get additional 5% pay increases for the following three years.

Rodd McLeod is a spokesman for the Healthcare Rising Arizona campaign. He says Arizona has one of the highest turnover rates for healthcare workers in the country.

“You have one in five leaving for jobs in other states or leaving for other professions 'cause the salaries are so low," McLeod said. "And you have worker shortages that have real consequences for patients."

He says the pay increase would apply to every hospital worker from custodians to nurses. A spokesman for the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association declined to comment.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been updated to clarify that the pay increase would not apply to doctors.

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