Top 10 Reasons Against Unions - page 5

by PICUPNP

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top ten reasons why we don't want a union 10. the union doesn't write my paycheck. 9. unions would rather cause problems than work together. 8. union scale means the best workers are carrying the worst. 7. the... Read More


  1. 4
    Quote from lindarn
    We do have a national union- National Nurses United, an offshoot of the California Nurses Association. They are organizing in very anti union states, and have made great strides. And yes, I have been saying for years, that nurses need to unite at the National Level, to be able to sit with the big boys, and talk turkey!

    JMHO and my NY $0.02.
    Lindarn, RN,BSN, CCRN
    Somewhere in the PACNW
    As you say it is coming. One small correction though: NNU is rather more than an offshoot of CNA. CNA was a one-state union until 2004 when we decided to go national and created NNOC -National Nurses Organizing Committee for our work outside California. As NNOC, we now have collective bargaining units organized in Maine, Pennsylvania, Florida, Nevada, Texas, Missouri - maybe more, but that's all I can remember. Then a couple of years ago we joined together with the Massachusetts Nurses Assn. and what was basically the remnant of the UAN to form NNU. So we are the largest, and some might say dominant, partner in NNU, but there are other states who are important partners in that.
    herring_RN, Bella'sMyBaby, HazelLPN, and 1 other like this.
  2. 9
    Quote from viral2010
    So you're saying I should unionize just because of the possibility of those things happening? I don't know that I would subject myself to a union on the whim that my employer may do something to me. RTW doesn't necessarily = Bad Work environment. My wife is also a nurse and has never had the issues at work that you describe, but this isn't to say it doesn't happen. I can see some benefits to unionized nursing but I wouldn't be able to ethically or morally support a strike of any nature, here there or anywhere......
    I live in a right to work state too. For the past 3 years we've received no raises, NO raises. In this economy I don't expect to see one next year either. And our health benefit costs skyrocketed by a few hundred buckes a month, and covered a lot less. A recent ER visit had a $250 copay!!
    My dental coverage costs tripled, and my eye benefits were cut totally.

    Additionally, our management has singled out a few nurses who have brought up staffing issues, or safety issues. Now they are being written up for every living thing. But hey, there are a slew of new grads waiting for our soon-to-be open positions.

    God, how I wish for a union...
    GM2RN, MassED, Fiona59, and 6 others like this.
  3. 3
    I lived in Massachusetts for 30 years. Municipal jobs, especially unionized positions, are pure patronage there, and everyone knows it.

    In many towns, teachers, cops, and fire fighters are the highest-paid municipal employees. Six-figure pensions are the rule, not the exception, especially for cops and fire fighters. Boston had a huge scandal involving fire fighters getting injured while covering for their spervisors, which gets them a tax-free "disability pension" at the higher supervisor's rate. An alarming number of firefighters received career-ending disabilities while moving shelves on days they were filling in for their supervisors.

    The unions are under fire, and a lot of them brought it on themselves.
    MassED, roughmatch, and lindarn like this.
  4. 9
    Quote from Not_A_Hat_Person
    I lived in Massachusetts for 30 years. Municipal jobs, especially unionized positions, are pure patronage there, and everyone knows it.

    In many towns, teachers, cops, and fire fighters are the highest-paid municipal employees. Six-figure pensions are the rule, not the exception, especially for cops and fire fighters. Boston had a huge scandal involving fire fighters getting injured while covering for their spervisors, which gets them a tax-free "disability pension" at the higher supervisor's rate. An alarming number of firefighters received career-ending disabilities while moving shelves on days they were filling in for their supervisors.

    The unions are under fire, and a lot of them brought it on themselves.
    But where would we be, if we didn't have unions, to "equalize things out". There would be no one on the side of the little guy. Just look at the South, with there, "no unions or death". You only have to read the threads on this listserve, to see what nurses have to put up with, who work in these states.

    I also believe, that if the big hospitals in Boston had unionized in the 1990's, where the beginnings of the, "care redesign" began, we would not be in the horrendous staffing situations that we are today. The nurses from Beth Israel, and Mass General, were the "ground zero" for this pox on healthcare. When the hospitals there won this nonsense without a challenge like unionizing en masse by the nursing staff, it was a "green light" for the rest of the country.

    These hospitals were some of the best in the country with staffing, nurse satisfactione, etc. And it all went to hell in a handbasket in a matter of months. Those nurses had the opportunity to unionize, there were elections, but lost due to the "martyr marys" who didn't want to unionize, because it was, "unprofessional".

    Now they are all, "professional", with lousy working conditions, pay, benefits,etc. Who really won?

    The moral of the story is, yes, there are some unions who have taken advantage the ability to bargain, and "use" the system. But lets not throw the baby out with the bathwater!

    JMHO and my NY $0.02.
    Lindarn, RN ,BSN CCRN
    Somewhere in the PACNW
    GM2RN, MassED, Fiona59, and 6 others like this.
  5. 9
    I was brought up in the UK when / where unions had real power , it was not a good thing ,I now live and work in the US where management has almost all the power , that is not a good thing .
    Industrial relations are best when there is a equitable balance of power between labor and management , when one side of that equation is dominant , they tend to abuse that power .
    For any enterprise to suceed it needs both sides to freely feel they are gaining benefit from their efforts .
    GM2RN, withasmilelpn, MassED, and 6 others like this.
  6. 0
    Quote from lindarn
    I also believe, that if the big hospitals in Boston had unionized in the 1990's, where the beginnings of the, "care redesign" began, we would not be in the horrendous staffing situations that we are today. The nurses from Beth Israel, and Mass General, were the "ground zero" for this pox on healthcare. When the hospitals there won this nonsense without a challenge like unionizing en masse by the nursing staff, it was a "green light" for the rest of the country.

    These hospitals were some of the best in the country with staffing, nurse satisfaction, etc. And it all went to hell in a handbasket in a matter of months. Those nurses had the opportunity to unionize, there were elections, but lost due to the "martyr marys" who didn't want to unionize, because it was, "unprofessional".

    Now they are all, "professional", with lousy working conditions, pay, benefits,etc. Who really won?
    The big hospitals in Boston (Beth Israel, Mass General, Brigham and Women's, and New England Baptist) are all unionized. The Brigham almost went on strike a few years ago.
    Last edit by Not_A_Hat_Person on Feb 26, '11 : Reason: more information
  7. 3
    Quote from Not_A_Hat_Person
    The big hospitals in Boston (Beth Israel, Mass General, Brigham and Women's, and New England Baptist) are all unionized. The Brigham almost went on strike a few years ago.
    That wasn't the case 20 years ago. They rejected unionizing repeatedly even though their workplace was crashing down around them. The story is documented in the books written by Suzanne Gordon. Read it and weep!

    I am glad that they finally came to their senses, but at what cost to the nation, and nursing profession?

    JMHO and my NY $0.02.
    Lindarn, RN, BSN, CCRN
    Somewhere in the PACNW
    laborer, HazelLPN, and Bella'sMyBaby like this.
  8. 5
    Who the hell wrote reasons against unions in nursing, hospital administrations??? Sounds like it to me!!
    MassED, Fiona59, Bella'sMyBaby, and 2 others like this.
  9. 6
    Quote from nicurn001
    I was brought up in the UK when / where unions had real power , it was not a good thing ,I now live and work in the US where management has almost all the power , that is not a good thing .
    Industrial relations are best when there is a equitable balance of power between labor and management , when one side of that equation is dominant , they tend to abuse that power .
    For any enterprise to suceed it needs both sides to freely feel they are gaining benefit from their efforts .
    How true!

    I lived and worked in the UK for a number of years. You can see the remnants of the old union attitude in the UK in the demands of the "Looney Left" - political splinter groups. Some in the US may have seen the early Peter Sellers film, "I'm All Right Jack" a scathing satire of British labor (excuse me, labour) unions. But I digress.

    Unions in the US are responsible for the 40 hour work week, paid vacations, sick leave and huge improvements in workplace safety. Yes, unions, especially some public sector unions, have in some cases taken things to excess - you only need to look at what occured at GM for a good private-sector example. But manangement has taken things much further: Outsourcing jobs, legions of lobbyists, obscene executive compensation, the recent looting of the public treasury by banks and financial institutions. I could continue but the point is just as nicurn001 states: Balance.between the groups needs to be restored.

    That unfortunately won't happen for a while. At the moment, the pendulum is still im the process of swinging firmly to the right. Big business is in control of the government to a much greater degree than since the "Guilded Age" of the 1890's. This is true in Washington and increasingly in statehouses across the country. Things will change, but not until that pendulum hits its rightward azimuth. This means slow to non-existent wage growth, continued high umemployment, a decline in work place safety standards, increases in pollution, continued deterioration of infrastructure (roads, sewage systems, etc), decreases in corporate taxes and the imposition of hidden taxes on the middle class to make up the gap, and an even greater concentration of wealth (presently significantly higher than the previous high-water mark hit in the late 1920's, just prior to the Great Depression).

    In short, things will need to get significantly worse to wake up the average American.
    MassED, eagle78, lindarn, and 3 others like this.
  10. 4
    Most non-unionized Americans only see the bad side of union workers, and don't see how supporting unions would help them.

    I volunteered at a hospital where the nurses voted to strike. The union and hospital settled before picket lines went up. One of the issues was the nurses getting a 1% pay hike and having to pay for 10% of their health insurance premiums. Most non-union employees hadn't had a raise in years, and paid 50% of their health insurance premiums. Their attitude toward the nurses wasn't "Go nurses!", it was "Why are you complaining?"


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