Unions for Nurses

  1. I've got to give a presentation on any subject that I want to during one of my clinical preconferences. My husband is a union representative so I have an interest in unions but not enough to go off an a soapbox about them. I live in the south and haven't heard of nursing unions around here. Do those of you that work under a union find it helpful and what tips could you give me for my presentation?

    Thanks in advance,
  2. Visit atenpen profile page

    About atenpen

    Joined: Jan '03; Posts: 12


  3. by   fergus51
    I prefer a union environment and won't take work in a non-union environment again. I like that I don't have to negotiate my own pay and benefits and that they are standardized for nurses of different levels. I also like that it provides a means of conflict resolution. Almost all nurses in Canada are unionized.
  4. by   NRSKarenRN
    You can do a search here on almost any topic (see blue search button located opposite logo above)

    Nursing and unions search:

    Any thread started by JT will give you TONS of union information.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Jan 26, '03
  5. by   sjoe
    I have found CNA and SEIU to be ineffective, weak, not helpful or supportive, and generally lame, if that's any help. Had I a choice, it would be the Teamsters.
  6. by   tiger
    seiu is the only union i have any experience with. i believe that it is better to have a union(at least where i work the admin. will screw you left and right). but i've read that some are stronger than mine. for example----we still have to float, be called off, take unsafe # of pts, etc.... but, the way i see it, it could be worse. at least i have some recourse. in a non union you can be fired for no reason at all.
  7. by   Sally_ICURN
    Originally posted by sjoe
    I have found CNA ... to be ineffective, weak, not helpful or supportive, and generally lame, if that's any help.
    ?!?! Um, I'm happy with my union which is not CNA and I'd probably never join CNA, but to say they are "ineffective" or "generally lame" is WRONG. They wrote, introduced and sponsor to this day the legislation for the California nurse/patient ratio law! The very first such law in this nation. CNA has been fighting for years for safe staffing. We all should be grateful to them.

  8. by   -jt
    The United American Nurses/AFL-CIO, the labor arm of the American Nurses Association, is the nation's largest RN union - run for only staff RNs and by staff RNs - with over 100,000 staff nurse members - and is comprised of state nurses associations or their collective bargaining programs from 24 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands, so far. Specifically, the
    United American Nurses/AFL-CIO national union for staff RNs currently consists of the following state nurses associations:

    District of Columbia
    New Jersey
    New York
    North Carolina
    US Virgin Islands
    Washington State
    West Virgina


    Comments/Questions may be addressed to:
    Suzanne Martin
    The United American Nurses/AFL-CIO (UAN)


    To get a better idea of what the UAN and its union nurses are doing, see:
    The Working Conditions of Registered Nurses and Their Relation to Patient Safety
    Statement on Behalf of the United American Nurses, AFL-CIO to The Institute of Medicine Committee on Work Environment for Nurses and Patient Safety regarding The Working Conditions of Registered Nurses and Their Relation to Patient Safety
    Sept. 24, 2002
    Last edit by -jt on Jan 27, '03
  9. by   -jt
    <what tips could you give me>

    some info and statistics comparing union vs non-union. You might like to include them in your presentation:

    Union Nurses

    A Nurse's Story

    Why Unionize? For a voice on the job to improve the lives of families and their communities

    Today's unions - a voice for working families in our communities and in government and politics.

    If you need some charts and graphs to use as visual aids - just copy & print for your display board from:

    Unions Raise Wages - Especially for Minorities and Women

    Union Workers Have Better Health Care and Pensions

    Workers' Incomes Are Lower in States Where Workers Don't Have Union Rights

    Union workers have greater job stability

    Working Women

    have fun!
    Last edit by -jt on Jan 27, '03
  10. by   RED_ALERT37
    I have been in the CNA Union for 23 years, active as an Officer, Shop Steward, Negotiator and Professional Performance Committee Leader. I have been active both in the Hospital, Local and State Levels. I feel without the Union we would not have the Laws, Legislation, and the backbone to stand up to SUITES (aka Administration).

    Unions are not just about pay raises, they are moral and ethical support for the nurses. They provide the strength we need to fight for Patient Rights, Advocacy, and Safe Working Environments. I have heard horror stories in NON-UNION Hospitals, and how the nurses as a whole had no say so in the environment and how it is run. At least with a Union you have a grievence system and support to problem solve.

    I feel one of our biggest problems today is we as Nurses are not unified. Most are pushed to fight for themselves and hope they come out on top. If in fact we would all come together and STRIVE and FIGHT HARD for a SAFE FUNCTIONAL WORKING ENVIRONMENT..... we wouldnt dread going to work worrying about how many patients we have, what the acuity is, and how we are going to make it through another night without killing someone..... As you can tell I think the Union is a good thing !!
  11. by   -jt
    If you want to talk about the union difference in general, these links might help:

    The Union Difference in Politics -
    working families make the difference by building people-powered politics to compete with corporate-cash-driven political campaigns.


    'People-Powered Politics' - working families

    If you want to talk about REGISTERED NURSES and the union difference, these link will help:

    UAN - The Union for Staff RNs by Staff RNs

    When Nurses Choose Collective Bargaining

    ANA: "Collective Bargaining is a Nurse's Professional Imperative"!
    Last edit by -jt on Jan 27, '03