Well, the votes aren't in yet; so who knows what has been negotiated yet? I did have to work last night, and as the negotiators talked long into the night, we were trying so hard to get our patients stable and ready so we could be able to report off and leave at 5:30 AM. When the word finally came, I think the whole unit let out a sigh of relief: not so much that there isn't a strike, but that these patients will have an extra day or 2 to recuperate.
I've asked our AHN if we could get combat pay for working last night--- or a week's vacation (R&R!)because we worked last night-- for some reason, they laughed at me!
PeggyOhio, the whole strike negotiations started to crumble when 3 of the hospitals decided to break away from the group negotiations and talk to their nurse negotiators on their own. Then the docs at the Childrens' Hospitals demanded that the hospital negotiate with the nurses there because their patients were too sick for scabs to care for them. That left 7 hospitals holding the bag, and the nurses stuck together and were shown in the media as a solid, determined group-- making picket signs, at a nurse rally, etc.
It all boils down to lasting just 1 minute longer than the hospitals, as one of the speakers said at the rally yesterday (which I attended). The rally was terrific, with many speakers:US Senator Paul Wellstone, both the President and Director of the UAN, local leadership of the Teamsters, AFL-CIO, MNA, Mn. Attorney Mike Hatch (he's the one who broke the news to the media about the one HMO buying gold golf tees and lavish golf trips and Waterford crystal, etc. for its' sales team), a woman Mn. Senator who is pushing through a bill at the state level outlawing mandatory overtime, and so many more I can't remember them all.
I truely believe that if our nurse community did not have such a firm resolve about striking, the hospitals would have made us cave in. I don't think they expected all of us to be so tough. But once again, I haven't seen or heard what the offer is yet, so there is still a possibility that we may strike yet.
I will miss that time off, it sure was getting tempting and so tantalizingly close! Even the person who was insisting she'd cross the picket line had decided to go out. And one of the things I heard was the number of nurses who would QUIT if the hospitals forced us to go out! I'm not sure how large the number was, but there were quite a few from my unit who had asked the NM about procedures for resigning during the strike. Maybe that caught administrations' attention also.
The other thing that may have been nudging the hospitals back to the negotiating table is no one seems to know exactly how many scabs they were able to get here. The numbers really vary from 750 to 3000 in the news here. I wonder if the hospitals found out there was a nursing shortage of scabs also?