SAN FRANCISCO, March 24, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Registered nurses from every UC Medical Center in California will converge today at the UC Regents meeting in San Francisco to speak out against UC President Napolitano's proposed 2016 pension plan.
"The proposal put forth by President Napolitano seriously undermines the UC Pension plan, one of the primary tools to recruit and retain excellent nursing staff in the UC Medical system," said Maureen Dugan, an RN at UCSF and member of the California Nurses Association board. "We are urging the UC Regents to protect the high standards of patient care in the UC system by rejecting this wrong-headed plan."
What: Press Conference - Registered nurses demand UC Regents reject Napolitano's proposed pension plan.
When: Thursday, March 24th 8:00 a.m. prior to UC Regents meeting
Where: UCSF Mission Bay Conference Center, 1675 Owens St. San Francisco
Napolitano's plan is to be voted on just weeks after the release of a new report, "Missing the Mark: How Hedge Fund Investments at the University of California shortchange students, staff and California taxpayers." The report shows UC squandered $1 billion in fees since 2003 to hedge fund managers for investments that, despite their price tag, failed to outperform the general stock market. According to the report, UC paid hedge fund managers a dollar in fees for every two dollars generated in net returns. UC could have saved $950 million in fees, and generated $800 million in superior returns had it not invested in hedge funds. Despite a pledge in 2014 to withdraw from all hedge funds UC continues to hold hedge fund investments.
"For over a decade the Regents have been irresponsibly diverting UC resources to Wall Street hedge fund managers, while at the same time cutting services to our patients and raising tuition three-fold," said Fong Chuu, RN, UCLA Medical Center and CNA board member. "We're saying to the Regents, enough is enough! It is time to support our University of California, not have it be a tool for Wall Street."
Napolitano's proposal includes a two-tier benefit scheme that for the first time would provide better benefits for UC faculty compared to the rest of UC staff, including nurses, clinical researchers, custodians and clerical workers. This type of scheme was expressly opposed by members of a task force (comprised also of faculty) convened by Napolitano to recommend changes to UC's pension plan. Napolitano's pension proposal is designed to incentivize staff to take a 401(k)-style plan, and as a result, would undermine the current benefit plan by reducing contributions to it. The 401(K)-style plans are also less likely to provide secure retirement benefits, critics say.
In addition to the California Nurses Association, Lt. Governor and UC Regent Gavin Newsom, California State Labor Federation and the Academic Senate have voiced opposition to the proposal.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/rns-to-uc-regents-invest-in-students-patients-and-nurses-not-wall-street-300240856.html
SOURCE California Nurses Association/National Nurses United