Friday, March 21, 2014

Your Bargaining Team continues to work for a fair contract, one that enshrines safety and respect.  Through meetings, surveys, and discussions, it quickly became clear the safety and staffing  are the primary issues for many of the nurses here.  Currently, your Union is fighting for safe staffing minimums. This will create system the protects patient safety, with enforceable and objective staffing minimums.  Nurses on the bargaining team have offered to go unit by unit in a collaborative process with management.  Additionally, the team is fighting for “Free Charge” on the floors: a charge nurse that doesn’t take a team, and instead is a dedicated resource to her fellow nurses.  The team is also working to reform and improve the Staffing and Acuity Committee. Throughout, the Union nurses at the table have spoken with one voice: “Patient safety is paramount.”
          Management’s response?  Talk and more talk.  They are unwilling to cede any decision making ability to the real experts–us!  At times, they seem unwilling to admit that there even is a problem.  Please, join your Bargaining Team, and let the hospital know: “Inadequate staffing is all too real a problem!  Patient safety is paramount.  Give us the resources we need to care for OUR patients.”
         On wages, we have pushed management to move towards a pay scale.  This is a big  win for us.  It will create clearer, more equitable pay.  For many nurses, especially those  who have been here for several years, yet continue to make as much as new grads, this will result in sizeable, and well-earned, pay raises.  But here our work is not yet done.  Management continues to cry broke.  But, we know what we are  worth; it is a safe bet the hospital does, too.  We need the fair and competitive wages we deserve!
         Your team has made significant advances in several other areas.  We are close to an agreement on  call pay.  Your Bargaining Team has fought long and hard to end the exploitative practice of forcing nurses who take call to stay at the hospital, and only paying them straight time.  Both sides are extremely close to an agreement to end this practice, and have nurses compensated at time and a half.
          At the same time, management is also proposing removing EIB from the contract. That means they could make any changes they want, even eliminating it altogether.  It would immediately result in nurses having to use more PTO before receiving the EIB benefit.  We have heard from our members how important preserving EIB is and we're pushing back.  We have heard from you how important safe staffi ng is and we're pushing back.  We need YOU to let management know how important EIB is to you!  We need
YOU to let management know that you deserve safe staffing and decent wage!

This is OUR contract– All of Us.  We need your support!  Stay active and informed.


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