1199SEIU Union - Alethia Jones
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1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest social justice health care union in the United States with 400,000 members in NY, FL, MA, NJ, MD and DC. I served as director of its Education and Leadership Development Department 2012-2018.

Coretta Scott King (center) and Doris Turner, president of Local 1199, marches in Charleston, South Carolina during the hospital workers 1969 strike. © Jim Tynan. For more on civil rights and unionization in hospitals, visit here


History and Impact of 1199


Education materials developed on Janus v. AFSCME Supreme Court Case 2018

“Agents of Change: How Allied Health Care Workers Advance Structural Competency,” (available 2019).



This case offers a "bottom up" view of the health care industry through the voices of workers essential to the industry's operations, including unskilled and semi-skilled titles. Allied health care workers are often invisible members of the health care workforce, revealing the industry's own internal hierarchies of class, race, gender and status. This case illuminates their struggles, successes and challenges to end structural inequality in the workplace as they fight to transform low-wage, exploitative jobs into dignified, fairly compensated careers. Non-clinical members of the team are essential to improving patient care and obtaining structural change. Their knowledge and insight as partners are central to new innovations in care delivery. The case concludes with four ways to forge effective ties with worker and labor organizations to deepen structural competency within health care organizations.

“Introduction,” Special Issue: Labor and Racial Justice, Labor Studies Journal. Vol 42(1): 5-9. (2017.)