One Medical, a membership-based primary care firm, declared its intention to form a union this week. According to Workers United, the bargaining unit will include around 500 employees, a Service Employees International Union affiliate, including customer service agents, phlebotomists, administrative personnel and assistants, front desk workers, and virtual team members.A letter written by members of the One Medical Workers Union Organizing Committee said, “Each of us at One Medical pours our time, talent, and energy into providing the best possible healthcare for our patients. The workers on the frontlines of delivering this care have been at the center of our organizing process.”
According to a Workers United official, the committee has chosen to remain silent for fear of punishment. According to a spokeswoman, Workers United’s decision to organize originated from workers’ dissatisfaction with salaries, workflow, and job demands. Staff members, for example, feel they are “frequently deceived” about the workload, complexity, and level of responsibility the position entails during the hiring process, according to the spokesman.
All entry-level roles pay “far above minimum wage,” according to One Medical, with entry-level positions in San Francisco starting at 37% above minimum wage and structured annual salary increases. Given the recent rise in San Francisco’s minimum wage, that hourly rate would be $22.36. In addition, according to MIT’s living wage calculator, the living wage for a single adult without children in San Francisco County is $28. In contrast, it is $22.88 in the metropolitan region, which includes Oakland and Hayward.