Union asks nurses at the University of Massachusetts to OK strike - page 6

union asks nurses at the university of massachusetts to ok strike... Read More

  1. by   pickledpepperRN
    Well I voted to authorize a strike because management was making cuts that would have decimated our fine nursing staff.Nurses and our families need and deserve health insurance.
    We require the respect of an answer to our concerns and information requests. We require sufficient staff and equipment to provide safe, effective, therapeutic care.

    We ALL work together chief of staff, enviornmental services, and clerks.
    I will go on strike rather than let OUR hospital bean counters let our patients suffer and die.
  2. by   Ezra73
    Quote from solidaritynurse
    Ezra do you think nurses strike for entertainment? It was one of the hardest things we had to do. We practically begged the hospital to move the patients out, we extended the 10 day notice, but the census was as high as ever the day we walked out. Sometimes there is no alternative. Nursing is my profession. While I do love it, I do not do it out of the kindness of my heart. If I was a billionaire I would not be working as a nurse. I do this to support my family. If my skills are so valuable that peoples lives would be in danger if I did not provide them, then I should be able to provide them in a safe environment, and I should be fairly compensated for them.
    begged them to move the patients out? what?! how arrogant is that? please tell me you're not serious.

    fairly compensated? hmmm, i think i am personally worth $300K/yr, 36hrs/wk, no overtime, and should max out at 10 patients. oh, and no scrubbing in for surgery if its gonna make me leave later than the end of my shift. wait, that's not reasonable? well, then i am going to strike!!! how dare they not compensate me.

    there is nothing wrong with wanting to maximize return, but you have to keep things in perspective. more and more RNs are making ridiculous salaries...surpassing NPs/PAs, and in some cases, even MDs. is this fair? if you base your opinion on education and responsibility then no. if you base your opinion on years worked and the old "they owe me" attitude then i guess it is fair...in fantasy land.
  3. by   Ezra73
    Quote from spacenurse
    Well I voted to authorize a strike because management was making cuts that would have decimated our fine nursing staff.Nurses and our families need and deserve health insurance.
    We require the respect of an answer to our concerns and information requests. We require sufficient staff and equipment to provide safe, effective, therapeutic care.

    We ALL work together chief of staff, enviornmental services, and clerks.
    I will go on strike rather than let OUR hospital bean counters let our patients suffer and die.
    you require sufficient staff and equipment, i agree. you do not require information unless upper management feels the need to share. this is the fundamental difference between medical people and buisness. medicine is a business today. the business model exists for a reason and if you were an employee at microsoft and demanded the CEO/staff to tell you information, well, you wouldn't get very far with your inquiry.

    honestly, if you let 100% clinically skilled people (RNs/MDs/etc.) with no business experience run hospitals then we would have no hospitals. the mindset/skills are completely different.
  4. by   crb613
    "DISAGREE ALL YOU LIKE WITH MY OPINIONS ON STRIKING, BUT DO NOT SINK AS LOW AS TO INSULT ONE'S EDUCATION AND PROFESSION. THAT JUST MAKES YOU LOOK LIKE A JERK WITH LITTLE RESPECT FOR OTHERS". Post # 50 Ezra73
    Now that would be the pot calling the kettle black!
    Last edit by crb613 on Nov 6, '06
  5. by   mekrn
    Quote from Ezra73
    begged them to move the patients out? what?! how arrogant is that? please tell me you're not serious.

    fairly compensated? hmmm, i think i am personally worth $300K/yr, 36hrs/wk, no overtime, and should max out at 10 patients. oh, and no scrubbing in for surgery if its gonna make me leave later than the end of my shift. wait, that's not reasonable? well, then i am going to strike!!! how dare they not compensate me.

    there is nothing wrong with wanting to maximize return, but you have to keep things in perspective. more and more RNs are making ridiculous salaries...surpassing NPs/PAs, and in some cases, even MDs. is this fair? if you base your opinion on education and responsibility then no. if you base your opinion on years worked and the old "they owe me" attitude then i guess it is fair...in fantasy land.
    Arrogant is hospital management believing a) that we would not really strike, b) if we did strike at LEAST 500 of our 1100 nurses would cross the picket line (only 30 did, and after 1 month, only about 70 total) c) even with 20+ days notice making no attempts to lower the census in preparation for the strike (you may not be aware but that is routine in nursing strikes) particularly the NICU, since the SCAB agency could not provide them with adequate coverage in that specialty and most of the ones provided could not pass a medication calculation test. Therefore, they were scrambling to transfer people out when the "arrogant" powers that be saw what was really happening. THAT, my friend, is arrogance.

    Additionally, our strike was not about salary, but about health benefits (or lack thereof) as well as an intimidation campaign that went on during negotiations (and unfortunately continues today in some areas).

    The only RN's I know making large salaries are ones that work 100 hours a pay period. Sorry, this thread is about striking and I will not get into the NP/RN debate with you.
  6. by   pickledpepperRN
    The information requests we ask for and must recieve are related to patient care. Believe it or not nurses and other direct care staff are lied to by management.
    We ask for and receive the scope of practice, the acuity system and how it increases staff according to the needs of each individual patient.
    Often they are not following their own policies so we formally recomment they do so. If a policy is unsafe, such as required floating to NICU by adult nurses we have a form to document it. We went to assist but could not accept the assignment of responsibility for any patient.

    Our union got a law passed that states, "No hospital shall assign a licensed nurse to a nursing unit or clinical area unless that hospital determines that the licensed nurse has demonstrated current competence in providing care in that area, and has also received orientation to that hospital's clinical area sufficient to provide competent care to patients in that area. The policies and procedures of the hospital shall contain the hospital's criteria for making this determination."
    We made a formal information request for the policies used to determine and validate competency for the NICU.
    We recommended as per our union contract that NO nurse may be assigned responsibility for critically ill neonates unless their competency has been validated in writing.
    Our union contract required them to provide an answer in writing.
    They stopped floating us to NICU. If it were verbal only I doubt the management would have just continued floating us with no understanding that "A nurse is a nurse" is no more valid than assigning an OB Gyn physician to perform brain surgery. (or the neurosurgeon to deliver a baby).

    WE are responsible for patient care. We require that information even if the CEO or CFO does not want to share.

    As I stated I will go on strike as a last resort to protect our patients. WE will be right there on the sidewalk ready to go care for patients if management asks.
  7. by   mekrn
    Quote from spacenurse
    The information requests we ask for and must recieve are related to patient care. Believe it or not nurses and other direct care staff are lied to by management.
    We ask for and receive the scope of practice, the acuity system and how it increases staff according to the needs of each individual patient.
    Often they are not following their own policies so we formally recomment they do so. If a policy is unsafe, such as required floating to NICU by adult nurses we have a form to document it. We went to assist but could not accept the assignment of responsibility for any patient.

    Our union got a law passed that states, "No hospital shall assign a licensed nurse to a nursing unit or clinical area unless that hospital determines that the licensed nurse has demonstrated current competence in providing care in that area, and has also received orientation to that hospital's clinical area sufficient to provide competent care to patients in that area. The policies and procedures of the hospital shall contain the hospital's criteria for making this determination."
    We made a formal information request for the policies used to determine and validate competency for the NICU.
    We recommended as per our union contract that NO nurse may be assigned responsibility for critically ill neonates unless their competency has been validated in writing.
    Our union contract required them to provide an answer in writing.
    They stopped floating us to NICU. If it were verbal only I doubt the management would have just continued floating us with no understanding that "A nurse is a nurse" is no more valid than assigning an OB Gyn physician to perform brain surgery. (or the neurosurgeon to deliver a baby).

    WE are responsible for patient care. We require that information even if the CEO or CFO does not want to share.

    As I stated I will go on strike as a last resort to protect our patients. WE will be right there on the sidewalk ready to go care for patients if management asks.
    You are absolutely right and as part of our newly ratified contract we now have a very clearly defined floating policy.

    Good luck to you.:spin:
  8. by   pickledpepperRN
    Quote from solidaritynurse
    You are absolutely right and as part of our newly ratified contract we now have a very clearly defined floating policy.

    Good luck to you.:spin:
    We have a decent contract for the next couple years. Our committee does a good job of protecting patients and improving care.Once we took a strike vote that showed them we were unified. We didn't have to strike but I would strike if all alternsatives failed.

    I am so glad you have a clearly defined floating policy.
    I admire your Association. You were truly heroic in your actions for your hospital, your patients, and your profession.

    http://www.massnurses.org/bu/UMass/index.htm#
  9. by   mekrn
    Quote from spacenurse
    We have a decent contract for the next couple years. Our committee does a good job of protecting patients and improving care.Once we took a strike vote that showed them we were unified. We didn't have to strike but I would strike if all alternsatives failed.

    I am so glad you have a clearly defined floating policy.
    I admire your Association. You were truly heroic in your actions for your hospital, your patients, and your profession.

    http://www.massnurses.org/bu/UMass/index.htm#
    Thanks so much and thanks for the great link!
  10. by   nuangel1
    Quote from spacenurse
    Well I voted to authorize a strike because management was making cuts that would have decimated our fine nursing staff.Nurses and our families need and deserve health insurance.
    We require the respect of an answer to our concerns and information requests. We require sufficient staff and equipment to provide safe, effective, therapeutic care.

    We ALL work together chief of staff, enviornmental services, and clerks.
    I will go on strike rather than let OUR hospital bean counters let our patients suffer and die.
    very well said right now my hospital refuses to negotiate with us .they are trying to blackmail us into agreeing to pension plan before they will even discuss wages insurance etc.we have been without a contract since sept .we have had 2 informatonal pickets ,passed out fliers have done newspaper and tv ads still the hospital wants to give 1.5 % raise over 3 yrs double and triple our healthcare copays add copays gut our pension cut hrs inc mandatory ot.etc yet if we strike its because we are "selfish or looking for money and don't care for our pt's"is what others have posted .bull.they have already hired scabs.i have been a nurse for 20yrs .i am an excellent nurse but i refuse to work for nothing be under appreciated and not be able to provide myself and my family now and in future .
  11. by   mekrn
    Quote from nuangel1
    very well said right now my hospital refuses to negotiate with us .they are trying to blackmail us into agreeing to pension plan before they will even discuss wages insurance etc.we have been without a contract since sept .we have had 2 informatonal pickets ,passed out fliers have done newspaper and tv ads still the hospital wants to give 1.5 % raise over 3 yrs double and triple our healthcare copays add copays gut our pension cut hrs inc mandatory ot.etc yet if we strike its because we are "selfish or looking for money and don't care for our pt's"is what others have posted .bull.they have already hired scabs.i have been a nurse for 20yrs .i am an excellent nurse but i refuse to work for nothing be under appreciated and not be able to provide myself and my family now and in future .
    Hang in there.
    You will be ok.
    YOU DO DESERVE MORE!

    www.picunurses.net/video.htm
  12. by   Ezra73
    Quote from crb613
    "DISAGREE ALL YOU LIKE WITH MY OPINIONS ON STRIKING, BUT DO NOT SINK AS LOW AS TO INSULT ONE'S EDUCATION AND PROFESSION. THAT JUST MAKES YOU LOOK LIKE A JERK WITH LITTLE RESPECT FOR OTHERS". Post # 50 Ezra73
    Now that would be the pot calling the kettle black!
    when have i insulted one's profession? in fact, i commended spacenurse. why not try reading the whole thing rather than picking and choosing little tid bits of stuff in order to attempt to win an argument or make me look bad.
  13. by   PANurseRN1
    Quote from Ezra73
    a strike of any kind by a healthcare provider (actually, its usually only RNs) disgusts me. it puts patients at risk...PERIOD.

    i could care less if a CEO makes over a million bucks. why not just be angry at every politician that uses our tax dollars to eat the finest foods, drink the finest wines, and travel in luxury jets and/or limos. being a CEO has its perks politically, socially, and with great monetary rewards. THIS IS WITH EVERY INSTITUTION IN EVERY INDUSTRY.

    the bottom-line is that quality RNs will walk out the door and leave patients at risk.

    almost every union RN here will blast me with some justification for striking, but it will fall on deaf ears because no matter how you attempt to explain yourself, the fact is that you are leaving the bed side. By taking your skills to the picket lines you are doing nothing more than putting patient's lives in danger. you will not be there and you will leave a nurse with less experience to do your job. then, you will blame the institution and/or CEO for this to cover up the fact that you just are sore that your own greed was not met with open arms by the employer that puts food on your table.
    What about you? I'm sure you're not working on a M/S floor as an NP. You obviously left for something better; why shouldn't the nurses who are in the trenches deserve better compensation. Are you not also greedy for wanting something better?

    I'm astounded that you buy into this. There are plenty of travel agencies that have experienced nurses who make a living going from strike to strike. The hospital is given plenty of time to make contingency plans for a strike. Strikes do not just come out of left field.

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