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Hale Nani workers authorize three-day strike

The union representing more than 200 workers at the state’s largest skilled nursing facility said members have authorized a three-day strike in response to unfair treatment of employees.

More than 80 percent of the unionized employees at Hale Nani Rehabilitation & Nursing Center voted in favor of a strike set to begin at 5:30 p.m. on May 16 and end at the same time on May 19, according to Unite Here Local 5, the workers’ union that filed three unfair labor practice charges against Hale Nani for “intimidating and surveilling union supporters.”

Hale Nani, owned by Utah-based Avalon Health Care, is a 288-bed facility at 1677 Pensacola St. with 270 patients and 416 employees. Local 5 represents 211 workers — primarily certified nursing assistants and employees in the dietary, maintenance, recreation, and housekeeping departments.

Steve Gold, regional vice president of Hawaii-Avalon Health Care, said the the facility is “fully prepared to provide all services and maintain our operations as usual” during the union strike and that management has been negotiating in good faith a new contract with Local 5 over the past four months. He didn’t disclose details of the contract negotiations.

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