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In 2000 a group of about 100 physical therapists, occupational therapists, and speech pathologists, most of whom are employed on a contingent basis in the home care division of a Virginia-based health care corporation, performed a remarkable feat. They organized an independent union and won an NLRB election in the face of stiff employer opposition. The story of the Organization of Home Care Professionals (OHCP) is intriguing in its own right because these professionals initially and explicitly steered clear of affiliation with any established union, preferring to chart their own course aimed at blending aspects of unions and professional associations. It is also noteworthy because most of the 80+ dues-paying members of OHCP did not know each other before the campaign began, and relied on e-mail and a web site to build their organization.


Suggested Citation
Hurd, R. W. & Tenenholtz, E. (2002). Charting their own future: Independent organizing by professional workers [Electronic version]. Proceedings of the Fifty-Fourth Annual Meeting of the Industrial Relations Research Association (pp. 172-179). Champaign, IL: Labor and Employment Relations Association.

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© Labor and Employment Relations Association. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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