More than 400 emergency medical services (EMS) professionals at Falck Northern California have won their election to join United EMS Workers-AFSCME Local 4911, a victory that will strengthen their efforts to improve the services they provide to their communities.
The ballots were counted at the National Labor Relations Board office here Monday, revealing a union victory despite the private company’s attempts to divide and discourage employees. Workers joined AFSCME seeking more accountability and respect and, most importantly, a greater commitment to patient care and safety.
“I voted yes because I want a voice to better the company and help out my co-workers,” said Emergency Medical Technician Gian Valinoti. “By organizing a union at Falck, we can fight for accountability and help raise the bar in EMS.”
Valinoti spent his career in public service. He worked as a hospital emergency department technician and worked and volunteered as a firefighter before becoming an EMT at Falck. He began talking with his co-workers about organizing a union nearly a year ago. On Monday, he attended the vote count.
“Something we would like to see in the future is a fatigue policy that prioritizes crew safety, not just caters to the employer,” he said.