AlliedUP: A Worker-Owned Healthcare Staffing Cooperative Transforms Temporary Work - CLEO Skip to main content


Contingent workers make up a large part of today’s healthcare workforce, and the healthcare industry is America’s most contingent worker-dependent industry. While contingent healthcare workers overall earn low pay with few benefits, contingent work burdens fall most heavily on women of color, due to deep race and gender-based inequalities that have long plagued the healthcare profession. In the face of these challenges, AlliedUP is a new healthcare staffing worker cooperative that was founded in 2021 to provide better working conditions for healthcare professionals with full-time employment opportunities, robust benefits, and democratic decision-making processes. Interestingly, the role of a labor union, Service Employees International Union-United Health Workers West (SEIU-UHW), was critical in launching this cooperative. Not only did SEIU-UHW support from the concept stage, but it also provided support with direct funding to launch the cooperative. This case study demonstrates how a contingent workforce can find stability and democratic voice in a collaboration between a worker cooperative and a labor union.