More New Jersey RNs unionize with NYSNA
Greenville Hospital RNs elect association as representative
Jersey City, NJ, April 24, 2003 - The New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) has expanded its reach outside of New York -winning its first union election in Northern New Jersey and its second election overall in that state. This afternoon, Registered Nurses at Greenville Hospital overwhelmingly elected NYSNA to be their collective bargaining representative.
"Greenville nurses wanted someone to stand up for them, someone to help them fight for better working conditions," said Lisa Ruiz, NYSNA organizer. "They felt that management wasn't giving them an opportunity to take part in the decision making that affects their practice. By joining a union, they will now have some control."
NYSNA will represent the RNs through an agreement with the New Jersey State Nurses Association, which does not provide collective bargaining services itself. Both associations are members of the United American Nurses, an affiliate of the AFL-CIO.
The nurses sought union representation because of:
* High patient to RN levels, which have caused the frustrated nurses to work unpaid overtime and handle more patients than they feel is safe.
* An inequitable salary structure that did little to reward veteran nurses for years of dedicated service and was not competitive with area hospitals.
* And, most important, their desire to have a voice in the decisions that affect their own practice and their ability to care for their patients.
The next step will be to draw up a set of rules for the bargaining unit, elect RN officers, form staff RN/management committees, and develop proposals for a first contract. Negotiations for new bargaining units usually start within two months after the election.
Part of the Liberty Health Care System, which includes Jersey City Medical Center, Greenville Hospital is the second New Jersey facility to organize with NYSNA. The union has represented the 430 RNs at Shore Memorial Hospital in Somers Point since April 2001. For more than a century, NYSNA has been working to make an RN's workplace safer and economically secure. It has been fighting hospital administrators who cut costs by cutting corners on nursing care.
The New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA), with more than 34,000 members, is New York's largest union and professional association for Registered Nurses. NYSNA is the only organization that exclusively represents the interests of New York State's RNs, and is recognized nationwide as a trendsetter in improving RNs' wages and working conditions. NYSNA works to advance the nursing profession through collective bargaining and legislative activities, and fosters high standards of nursing education and practice. It is a constituent of the American Nurses Association and a founding member of its labor arm, the United American Nurses, an affiliate of the AFL-CIO.
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