Unions prevelance across US? - page 2

I often read people encouraging someone to "contact your union rep" and wonder how many states have nursing unions? I know in the 80s there was talk when I worked in Colorado of getting a union but... Read More

  1. Visit  Q_rnc profile page
    1
    I work for a faith-based hospital from California. I do not live or work in California. I live in a neighboring state that is a "right to work" state. Several months ago, I suffered a minor injury due to faulty equipment at work. I e-mailed my boss about the equipment and explained that I had concerns that the equipment has caused multiple nurses to be injured, citing their injuries and names so that she could verify. I asked that the equipment be removed from the unit. It was. Unfortunately, several other pieces of the same kind of equipment with the same faults remained. I discovered this recently. I'm concerned because the manager has not been receptive to other issues brought up by staff. Some have mentioned feeling intimidated to bring up matters. We look out for each other. We are like a family. And I cannot help but wonder if we could benefit from having a collective voice that is not suppressed by fear of job loss. I've been a member of the ANA for quite a few years but I have never felt any support from them or my state association. I have only felt the need to pay my dues or receive further mailings urging me to do so. So I would ask the collective voice of nurses here, please, explain the benefit of unions to those who fear them. Think of this as a patient newly diagnosed with diabetes. What do we need to know to make a good decision without emotion, about the presence or absence of unions in our workplace.
    herring_RN likes this.
  2. Visit  Q_rnc profile page
    0
    I know your place. I worked their as a traveler once. You're right - they were one of the best paying places in the area. Also the only L&D I ever worked in where so many nurses participated in a nightly 3 a.m. card game. And the only time I ever had a CEO announce during his orientation welcome speech that traveling nurses were insignificant. Yep, I felt real welcome there. I can understand why you don't want a union.
  3. Visit  Chico David RN profile page
    0
    Quote from Q_rnc
    I work for a faith-based hospital from California. I do not live or work in California. I live in a neighboring state that is a "right to work" state. Several months ago, I suffered a minor injury due to faulty equipment at work. I e-mailed my boss about the equipment and explained that I had concerns that the equipment has caused multiple nurses to be injured, citing their injuries and names so that she could verify. I asked that the equipment be removed from the unit. It was. Unfortunately, several other pieces of the same kind of equipment with the same faults remained. I discovered this recently. I'm concerned because the manager has not been receptive to other issues brought up by staff. Some have mentioned feeling intimidated to bring up matters. We look out for each other. We are like a family. And I cannot help but wonder if we could benefit from having a collective voice that is not suppressed by fear of job loss. I've been a member of the ANA for quite a few years but I have never felt any support from them or my state association. I have only felt the need to pay my dues or receive further mailings urging me to do so. So I would ask the collective voice of nurses here, please, explain the benefit of unions to those who fear them. Think of this as a patient newly diagnosed with diabetes. What do we need to know to make a good decision without emotion, about the presence or absence of unions in our workplace.
    I speak as an unabashed union supporter, so bear that in mind. For us, one of the strength s of having a union is in exactly this kind of situation: Since a nurse can only be fired for "just cause" under a union contract, everyone feels entirely able to speak up about unsafe or intolerable situations or conditions. On things that are not clearly covered by contract language nurses still have to be willing to speak up and advovate as always, but now they feel safe doing so. We've had situations recently with safety in the ER - now much improved - and an attempt to implement a non-functional computer charting system in ICU - now on hold and looking for something better. In both cases the nurses affected spoke up for themselves, but after consulting with union reps and with management knowing that union reps were watching the situation and ready to intervene if needed. Not to mention all the simpler stuff like wages and benefits that are handled by the contract.
  4. Visit  68drop profile page
    1
    Unions are a giant double sided sword. Sure they are working for you to have better conditions. But many lazy people lean on the unions to get away with doing poor work and then complaining about conditions and money. Personally I think unions are a bunch of suited crooks looking for dues.
    PICUPNP likes this.
  5. Visit  nicurn001 profile page
    1
    Those lazy nurses , can get away with it because management is also lazy in not following applicable policies and /or law . Unions can only defend the nurse if management cannot prove that the nurse is in breach of policy / law . The union takes no joy in defending lazy nurses , it is simply representing a member who is in trouble and has requested defence against a managment charge .

    Any one who provides a service is entitled to compensation , dues are the fees paid for services provided by the union , whether or not you like unions surely as a service provider they should be able to collect a fee ?.
    Chico David RN likes this.
  6. Visit  Chico David RN profile page
    0
    Unions vary a lot in how well they serve their members and the public at large, but in nursing the best unions are some of the best anywhere. Nobody is getting rich - though staff are decently paid and have good benefits (if you believe your members are entitled to those, it's hard not to provide them to the staff). Of course unions collect dues, but those go to the mission of the union - much of which is not readily visible to the members. Just for one example, my union keeps a substantial legislative staff which reviews every bill introduced into the legislature for its impact on nurses and patients. Most of what that staff does is stop bad bills, more than pass good ones. Most of those bad bills are bills that would save hospitals money by allowing them to hire less trained people to do the work of RNs. Every year dozens of bills are introduced to allow everyone from LVNs and xray techs to school office personnel to do things that the law reserves for RNs. Most of those bills sink without a trace precisely because our union staff is there to stop them.
    As for unions protecting "bad" or lazy nurses: ditto to the above commentor. If any manager tells you they can't fire a bad nurse "because of the union" there are only two possibilities: the manager is lying, or too lazy to do their job properly. All a union can do is ensure due process for discipline: the right to know what's expected of you, the right to notice if you aren't meeting expectations and a reasonable opportunity to correct your deficiencies. Can anyone say that's an unreasonable expectation?


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