The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

November 16, 2010
SEIU demonstration to highlight workplace safety concerns

bateson.gifEditor's note, 11:37 a.m.: This post has amended to reflect more specifically the number of SEIU-represented employees at Napa State Hospital and the jobs that they perform.

The killing of a Napa State Hospital employee last month has prompted SEIU Local 1000 to plan a demonstration this morning at the downtown Sacramento headquarters of the Department of Mental Health and the Department of Developmental Services.

The union represents many employees that work at state hospitals and mental health facilities, including the Napa hospital where psychiatric technician Donna Gross was killed last month.

Abut 4,000 Local 1000 employees work for the Departrment of Mental Health. Gross wasn't a member of the local -- she was represented by the California Association of Psychiatric Technicians -- but SEIU-covered employees work at Napa State and similar facilities around California. About 1,000 Local 1000 workers serve at Napa State as nurses, lab technicians, custodians, food service staff and in other support and service capacities.

"Unfortunately, patients and state workers alike are subject to assaults and other types of violence on a daily basis. We won't take it any more!" the union said in a flyer announcing the demonstration.

The union plans to gather from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at the Bateson Building headquarters for both departments, 1600 9th St. in Sacramento.

PHOTO: The Bateson Building at P and 9th streets in Sacramento, where SEIU Local 1000 plans to demonstrate today. /

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About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at


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