"Scabs" - page 3

Why do nurses take these assignments???? Especially in this day and age when most strikes are about benefit levels, staffing ratios, working conditions???... Read More

  1. by   caroladybelle
    Quote from kuntrinurse
    There are some good things and some bad things about a union. The nurese/patient ratio is one of the things that is controlled if you are unionized. Come to think of it, I really don't see a whole lot wrong with unions. Personally, I wouldnt cross a picket line. If your contract conviently left out the fact that the facility and nurses were in negotiations over their contract then you are not bound by your contract. Just be sure to check it out before signing at any facility that employs unionized nurses. Which states have nursing unions now days? Where would you go to find that out? I'm in Fla....no chance of unions this far south....that's why the high patient ratios, high cost of living and low pay,
    There are actually plenty of bad things about unions. As traveler, I routinely encounter greater amounts of "dead wood" and crappy attitude in union facilities. They were also, incidently, the ONLY ones that had mandatory OT. That is after working in over a dozen facilities - about half were union.
    (I know that opinion will offend some, but I call'em as I see'um).

    I try to NOT work union facilities for those reasons. But one rarely can find a non offending way to put that in your interview.

    As far as a traveler not being " bound" to his/her contract if they were not aware of a strike, I have news for you. Plenty of them have been in deep dirt after they tried to break contract for just that reason.

    If I break contract, FOR ANY REASON - even unforeseeable illness or unsafe facility conditions, I will be paying a sizeable sum to most agencies. I guarantee that only a few will let you off the hook for a strike.

    Florida has several unionized facilities. One is Lakeland Regional Medical Center.
  2. by   EmerNurse
    Quote from caroladybelle
    ...
    Florida has several unionized facilities. One is Lakeland Regional Medical Center.
    I work at a FL unionized facility. It's also a county facility. We're not allowed to strike. Per contract. Oh and it's an at-will state, so not all nurses are in the union, though they get the same benefits as those who pay dues. Talk about convoluted.
  3. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Quote from Finches
    First of all, most nurses who get into Travel Nursing do so because of the "travel" part of it.
    I disagree. I got into travel nursing because I live in an area where there are too many nurses, and few jobs. For the few jobs available, wages are very low. Most travelers I've spoken to became travelers to avoid the politics that come with being a "regular" employee. Another common reason nurses travel is because it frees nurses from being obligated to an employer the way a regular employee is. If I want three months off, I simply don't take an assignment for three months.
    Many travelers come from areas where wages are low and working conditions are poor. Many of us travel for higher wages and better working conditions.
    Most travelers do not enjoy leaving their homes and families for montha at a time. But, we do what we have to do.
  4. by   NurseJacqui
    So if nurses are on strike and no " scab" workers step in..what happens to the patients? Imagine an ER or an ICU or anywhere for that matter with NO nurses. What if that was your child in that hospital or parent, etc? I understand where the unions are coming from and I have never worked a strike but somebody has to take care of these people.....
  5. by   CHATSDALE
    nurses should not be more interested in the welfare of patients than management
    and a scab is a scab whether or not you just say that they are an oportunist..
    management is not stupid..they let the strike go on because they will make more money if they 'outlast' the workers...if they agree to make payraise adjustments or hire extra nurses to improve patient-nurse ratio then they will have to pay more for the next several years...money that will come out of their pocket
    and to 'give in' to strikers sets a precedent that all management not just health care wants to avoid at all costs
  6. by   LadyNASDAQ
    Money. I know one male RN who I met in Calif. He told me he works strikes and supplements himself with short term contracts. He makes over 6 figures.

    I told him he's brave. I am very chicken making my living that way lol.
  7. by   NurseguyFL
    Terra,

    I don't critisize nurses who decide to go 'scabbing' because its their right to do that if they so choose. And you are right, somebody has to take care of the patients. However, I doubt that most who cross the picket lines do it mostly out of concern for the welfare of the patients. Strike work pays a lot of money, and that's usually the real motivator. But, again, to each his own. There's always at least two sides to every issue, and I don't believe that any group of nurses would be on strike at all unless the reasons are legitimate. Of course, we care about our patients, but we have to care about ourselves and our licenses, too. What management cares the most about is profit, and in many cases, they are too willing to achieve that goal at the sacrifice of patient safety and decent working conditions for nurses.

    You raised an important point when you wrote: "... what happens to the patients? Imagine an ER or an ICU or anywhere for that matter with NO nurses..." The point is that hospitals cannot function without nurses. Too bad some corporate executives don't seem to understand this. If they can afford to pay themselves six-figure salaries with outrageous benefits and perks, and if they can afford to pay strike workers much higher pay than they are willing to pay their own staff, then they can afford to treat their nurses a little better and they can certainly afford to implement safer patient ratios.

    Quote from TerraRN
    So if nurses are on strike and no " scab" workers step in..what happens to the patients? Imagine an ER or an ICU or anywhere for that matter with NO nurses. What if that was your child in that hospital or parent, etc? I understand where the unions are coming from and I have never worked a strike but somebody has to take care of these people.....
  8. by   cariad
    Quote from caroladybelle
    By the same token, Karen, if hospitals couldn't get an ample supply of cheap, obligated foreign nurses by throwing special interest (paid for by hospital concerns) money at Congress, authorizing extra visas,........they would be forced to improve pay and working conditions.

    How much money do you suppose that we as HC consumers pay (via pocket or insurance) pay for hospitals recruiting overseas, arranging for special tests, classes and paperwork for importing nurses.

    But I don't see people treating immigrant nurses as badly as "scabs". We see a great deal of support for them and none for strike breakers. This can be seen easily on this BB.

    ....And I remind everyone that I am antiunion, anti scab and will not work for any agency that actively staffs strikes....I am merely pointing out an idiosyncracy here. I have nothing against immigrant nurses. But they do harm our working conditions and pay (despite laws that "supposedly" protect US nurses' interest), not to mention, robbing their home country of their talents. It also gives them less impetus to affect change at the country of origin.

    I will lay you odds more money gets spent on them than strike nurses, and the importation hurts conditions for HC facility nurses more. It is just more subtle. And they are doing it to better their lot, much like the "scab" does.
    I am an immigrant nurse who came via an agency which paid for me to come through immigration etc, and some funding from me, hence the lower rate of pay until I finished my contract. so how have me and the other nurses who came cost the american nurses any money?
    I have been a traveller since, but have not worked for over 3 months due to being rear-ended and having to have surgery, with no income and lots of extra medical payments to make. where I come from we dont pay for medical treatment, and I would have full sick pay for 6 months, so once again no american is funding me.
    I am anti-strike nursing, but I dont see who you are implicating with your statements.
    I dont consider that I have come from the uk to the us to better my lot, as not everything is better over here.
    and the statement about "you dont see imigrants being treated as badly as scabs" why would my co-workers want to treat me badly?
    I am applying to work on staff right now, so once again, if theres an american nurse who wants the job before me then let them have it, but the point being that there are not enough american nurses for the population, so I am applying for an available job, and going to be earning the same as anyone else who does it.
    please let me know how I am harming the working conditions and pay of american nurses.
  9. by   caroladybelle
    Quote from cariad
    I am an immigrant nurse who came via an agency which paid for me to come through immigration etc, and some funding from me, hence the lower rate of pay until I finished my contract. so how have me and the other nurses who came cost the american nurses any money?

    I am applying to work on staff right now, so once again, if theres an american nurse who wants the job before me then let them have it, but the point being that there are not enough american nurses for the population, so I am applying for an available job, and going to be earning the same as anyone else who does it.
    please let me know how I am harming the working conditions and pay of american nurses.
    There is an incorrect perception regarding the fictious idea of a nursing shortage.

    There IS NO AMERICAN NURSING SHORTAGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    There are over 500,000 licensed nurses not working as nurses in the USA. There are estimated 180,000 empty positions to be filled.

    I (and many others) have worked at facilities that made conditions so undesirable and pay rates so poor, that no one locally wants to work for them. They use that as an excuse to hire from out of the country. These facilities recognize that an american nurse has the freedom to leave a position that they do not like, while a foreign nurse has less options. So the facility gets a "captive" nurse that has few options, and has to pay expensive fees to get out of contracts.

    If the facilities did not have a supply of foreign nurses, they would be forced to improve conditions and pay better to attract American nurses.

    You may not like this, but I have seen it happen repeatedly in facilities. Thus importing foreign nurses does harm conditions in US nursing.

    Even right now, there is a current thread about a company, with such an abysmal record that it had a huge number of foreign staff (few US nurses would risk their licenses there) quit, despite having to pay back huge fees.......because of utterly lousy conditions. They are charging the foreign nurses with patient abandonment.

    Again, I have nothing against foreign nurses, but they are being used in a way deterimental to nursing conditions in the USA.
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    As far as strikes and who will take care of the patients:

    In most facilities, nursing management cannot strike and they are more than welcome to work in the same conditions that they have their employees work. But then they may not want to wear pearls and pumps that day. There are also plenty of nonunion personnel.

    As well as "concerned" facilities would transfer out all patients. Thus staffing would be more than adequate.

    However, very few facilities do that. They care more about making a point, profits and showing power than caring for the health of their patients.
  10. by   NurseJacqui
    Quote from NurseguyFL
    Terra,

    I don't critisize nurses who decide to go 'scabbing' because its their right to do that if they so choose. And you are right, somebody has to take care of the patients. However, I doubt that most who cross the picket lines do it mostly out of concern for the welfare of the patients. Strike work pays a lot of money, and that's usually the real motivator. But, again, to each his own. There's always at least two sides to every issue, and I don't believe that any group of nurses would be on strike at all unless the reasons are legitimate. Of course, we care about our patients, but we have to care about ourselves and our licenses, too. What management cares the most about is profit, and in many cases, they are too willing to achieve that goal at the sacrifice of patient safety and decent working conditions for nurses.

    You raised an important point when you wrote: "... what happens to the patients? Imagine an ER or an ICU or anywhere for that matter with NO nurses..." The point is that hospitals cannot function without nurses. Too bad some corporate executives don't seem to understand this. If they can afford to pay themselves six-figure salaries with outrageous benefits and perks, and if they can afford to pay strike workers much higher pay than they are willing to pay their own staff, then they can afford to treat their nurses a little better and they can certainly afford to implement safer patient ratios.
    I DO agree with you and I think nurses are not treated well. The nurses are the backbone of the hospital. Like I said I have never been a " scab" nurse...I would just hate to be the patient I guess!
  11. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from caroladybelle
    As well as "concerned" facilities would transfer out all patients. Thus staffing would be more than adequate.
    At the point a union can force this alternative on a hospital, they will lose every strike they attempt.

    WITHOUT patients being a thorn in the side of management during a strike, they can simply outwait strikers, even if it takes months to do so.

    See, hospitals are primarily patronized due to location. THAT dynamic doesn't change as a result of a strike so hospitals would not lose signficant business share by simply waiting it out.

    Since they DO have obligations to their communities, hospitals cannot shut down if they can at all avoid it. It's a catch-22 that is a disadvantage to hospitals and a decided advantage to unions during a strike.

    As such, strikers benefit by having replacement workers first, they bleed the hospitals dry so that they must be forced to reconsider the true costs of continuing a strike, and second, by keeping their doors open, meaning that the negative public perceptions of quality care during a strike remains an ever-present concern.

    You do NOT want to be a striking union member when a hospital closes its doors completely unless YOU have comparable economic resources as the hospital itself to 'wait it out'.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Mar 31, '07
  12. by   roxanneroxanne
    Hi!
    I've never known nurses to strike simply for money. It has always been for better working conditions and better patient safety.
    Just keep in mind if you go for the big strike bucks that if it wasn't safe to work there before the strike, imagine what it could be like when the work force is even more compromised.
    If it is not safe to be a patient, it certainly isn't safe for your nursing license.
    Support striking nurses- don't scab!
    Roxanne
  13. by   kalbo3
    It all comes down to the mighty dollar. Sometimes money can out way ethics and morals.

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