As courthouses go, the Federal one in San Francisco is quite majestic, black & white photos adorn the marble walls. Here is where over 150,000 healthcare workers throughout California seek long due justice. Here is where the former leaders of SEUI-UHW will start to make themselves accountable for the alleged acts they committed prior to their removal from power.
To proceed, one must understand what this case is and is not about. This case is to answer the following questions. 1) Did the Sal Roseli, John Borsos, NUHW and other defendants sabotage the union by purposely trying to create an “ungovernable situation?” 2) Did the defendants misuse members’ dues money to start a new union while they were still employed by UHW. 3) In laying the groundwork for the new union, did the defendants fail to negotiate contracts and rescind contract extensions, leaving members at risk. 4) Did the defendants betray their fiduciary duties to the union, while they were STILL officers or employed by SEIU-UHW? What this case is NOT about, is a rehash of whether the trusteeship was good or bad, right or wrong. Sal, John and their followers do not get to come to court and try to paint themselves like some kind of “Robin Hood.” This much Judge Alsup made crystal clear.
As I was sitting in the gallery watching Day 1 of case # 2090400 SEIU v Sal Roselli, et al, a few thoughts came to mind. First, this judge is a straight shooter who will take no nonsense from either party. The outcome rests in the verdict of a jury that represents the community quite well. In it are students, bankers, and engineers that range from early 20’s to mid 60’s in age. I have faith that they will decide the outcome based on the merits of the arguments, the evidence, and the application of the law. It’s about the facts, just the facts.