Union vs. Nonunion - page 2
Is your facility union or nonunion? What are the pros/cons?... Read More
Apr 7, '02Don, I think you missed the point Las Vegas was trying to make, which I think is that there is no incentive for the crappy nurses to do well, they know they will get their raise anyway, unless they are fired. Even if they are disciplined by management, they still are entitled to that 3% increase ever year, while the nurses who go the extra mile are not rewarded any differently.
I was forced to join the union. >$600 initiation fee, then >$40 per pay. Was not allowed to waive the health benefit, so I had to change from a POS plan w no referrals to this crappy plan where I have to have referrals for everything. The stupid health plan also does not cover children for well-child over age 7 years. There are a lot of other health-plan issues several nurses have discovered and we are planning to cause a stink at the upcoming bargaining sessions!! The only way I can stay under my husbands excellent insurance plan is to drop to PT, which I may do, now how does that serve my agency???
Also, I work in home health. The union has NOT ONE MENTION of how many visits we can do in a day, or how many case loads we can have. THIS IS WHAT THE FOCUS SHOUL BE!!!!! Forgive me for shouting, but Grrrrrr!!!!
I see unions as some person's very clever idea of how to make a living off the blood sweat and tears of the people who actually work. Meanwhile these fat cats sit back and collect a great salary! What I want a union to do for nurses is to lay out the staffing ratios, and to say that if those ratios aren't met, management MUST come in to supplement the staffing. As it stands now, management is not allowed to do visits, b/c they are non-union. Watch how fast units get staffed, well maybe, things have gotten so bad, the nurses aren't even there to fill the spots any more, by choice. Also, the union will not allow PT'ers to work more than 32 hours a week, even if they wanted to do OT. We are desperate for help, there are PT'ers who want OT, and we can't use them, this has got to be the stupidest rule of all. They cut off their own noses to spite their face!! Stupid!!
Not blasting you Don, just venting.
Apr 7, '02I think the PT rule is to stop admin from hiring nurses as part-time but using them as fulltime but not paying them any benefits. This is a problem where I am. (I am a casual worker, and can't get a full time position even though I always work full time hours).
Without sounding really annoying, I do have to add a union is only as good as its ACTIVE members.
Apr 7, '02in 25 y of nursing i've been the member of 3 unions, none of which were affiliated with nursing. the first ,the teamsters owned the hospital and sold it out from under us. the 2nd was ibew and that hospital voted it out. in the place i currently work i.m a member of the laborers union. this union was voted in because people were afraid of losing their jobs, nurses at the top of their pay scale had no job security. Management had take the attitude,it's my way or the highway. I can't say anything has changed except there is a greivance process in place. paycheck is lighter due to the subtraction of the dues. Plus the nurses i talk to just don't feel we have much in common with the laborers union, we even have a no strike clause in our policy. Still tho in this climate of bottom line mentality, i think a union isn't a bad idea but i think nurses should belong to a nursing union.
Apr 7, '02Too right Fergus. If the union isn't working for you, make a fuss about it! Ask what you are paying for!
As to disciplinary processes, they should include a provision for monitoring of the "offending" behaviour, with support/education, within clearly defined timescales, with the ultimate sanction if there is no improvement, of termination.
Apr 7, '02I have worked at a non-union hospital. I now work at a Union hospital and believe me there is a WORLD of difference. The staffing is better, the pay is better. Our last contract negotiations were last fall, although we were not able to eliminate MOT, we were able to have the ANA Staffing Guildlines written into the new contract.
The non-union hospital I worked at, we were ALWAYS working short staffed! All management had to say was "oh well, do the best you can. There is no help to send you". The pay sucked too! Sure, I'll agree that there are good points AND bad points of being unionized but I have yet to experience any.
Apr 7, '02I've worked both union and non-union. I'll go union all the way if it is a good union with a good contract. The best contract had our wages $10 more than the non-union hospitals (granted, we moved to a different state, as well). Not only that, there was an established grievance policy, clearly stated compensation for overtime over 8 hours, double time after 12 hours, overtime on the next shift if you didn't get at least a 12 hour break between shifts (even if it was your choice to do a double and return in 8 hours). We had a low census fund, so we could come in and work on nursing related duties or research if the census was low (instead of being put on call or called off) - this really helped us since we depended upon my income. We had paid educational days, up to $300 a year in tuition for continuing ed tuition. Much more!
In a non-union hospital, no matter what the manager says when you are hired, the hospital can change the "verbal contract" in a whim. You can organize, but you have no legal standing and the hospital does not legally have to hear you if you do not belong to a formal union.
If you don't like the way your union is being handled - get involved!!! Stop complaining and start working to change your situation. Or, get a different union. Yes, some unions are crap, but some are great! You are hiring them, and you can fire them.
Apr 7, '02I'm glad I started this post. I work in a non-union hospital, and I'm very curious about how nurses feel working in a union (or nonunion) facility. Thanks for the insight & keep the postings coming.