On Monday afternoon, March 28, visitors and patients arriving at Scripps La Jolla Hospital were greeted at the parking entrance by two gentlemen from Carpenters Local Union 1506. The flyers they were distributing spelled out alleged misdeeds by the hospital with a final note about substandard construction wages.
Another union individual with a video camera stood about 50 yards away, focusing on his colleagues. Mr. Mirazi, the parking supervisor, said the unwanted guests had arrived 15 minutes earlier.
Parking staff began to issue parking stubs ahead of the union members, who were standing next to the automated ticket machine; parking staff instructed drivers to pass through without stopping. Some drivers chose to stop for a flyer. Soon, several security guards arrived.
When contacted, a public affairs officer said she was unaware of the situation. She asked if I could fax her a copy of the flyer. She subsequently forwarded the following statement: “The current carpenters’ labor dispute is with a subcontractor who has been hired by a construction company contracted by Scripps Health. This has nothing to do with the level of patient care we provide at Scripps.
“Scripps Health has always used and will continue to use union and non-union labor on our facilities projects. It is important to note that some labor unions, such as the Carpenters Union 1506, hold inflammatory banners and distribute this type of literature as a tactic to generate attention to their cause.
“Scripps is taking appropriate measures to minimize any disruption to our patients, visitors, and staff, and to ensure that our patients and visitors have safe, unimpeded access to our facilities.”