I am a union member at my hospital. There are about 300 RN's employed and it is closed. We each pay about 500.00 a year for dues. We just negotiated a new contract and settled it in 3 days. This is why:
Our union president ran into administration in the elevator and the admin says...Hey, rumor has it that you guys are asking for 5 an hour raise, 5 and hour noc shift diff, and 3 percent for next year. Our president says...yeah, you heard right. A week later, this admin goes to our pres while working and says....we'll give you, 3 an hour, 4 for noc shift diff and a 3 percent raise next year. Our presidents says...Hey, Cool, we will take it! She then goes to the individual reps who represent our units, told them, they would take it or we would not get anything from the hospital. The reps then spent the next 3 days spreading fear among our nurses that if they didn't vote yes, we would not get a thing. A few notes were posted, a vote was held (we could call in our vote) and it passed.
Is this the way unions operate? If so, I'm not sure I want to be a part of this professional organization. I am a part timer and the only reason I knew about the vote, was I happened to work during the two days they had posted the vote notice.
I called our state office and complained. I'm not the only one upset about this. What do you all think of this?
The settlement seems kinda good, but am I understanding that you didn't agree that the President accepted to the CEO immediately right?
I guess my recommendation would then be that you need to really question the way decisions are made. While I am always looking to a democratic process, I'm wondering if your union contract negotiators (usually president & vice) had already decided in advance with other members of the team that the lowest they would go would be for example 3 dollar raise 3 dollar diff & 3 percent raise? They could have dragged on & on for more, but may have felt that the offer was better than what they would have settled for.
Read more threads. Its a common feeling amongst nurses that they would rather NOT strike (which is ultimately our final tool). Also were there any more benefits you may have overlooked? Sometimes we gain retirement, paid days off, education pay, etc.
I hope you use that disappointment to burn a fire in your activist spirit and get more involved in YOUR union. Make your leaders answer your questions. Hold them accountable. And ultimately work with them to be sure that your newly won contract is enforced.
“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.”-Plato
Last edit by smoke over fire on Oct 9, '08
: Reason: add quote