Oregon Nurses to Get 'Historic Wage Increases' to Avoid Threatened Strike

According to the statement by Oregon Nurses Association, if approved, these wage increases are "historic" and "key to the recruitment of new nurses." Nurses Headlines News

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Oregon Nurses to Get 'Historic Wage Increases' to Avoid Threatened Strike

Oregon nurses at St. Charles Medical Center have tentatively reached an agreement after two days of negotiations with a federal mediator, ending a threatened strike aimed to begin on Monday, June 12, 2023.

The deal is still awaiting a vote from nurses who have been working without a contract since Dec. 31. 

"This contract is going to be a game changer," stated Erin Harrington, chair of the St. Charles Bargaining Unit Executive Committee, "We have always put our patients, and the care of our community, front and center. With this contract, we can recruit more nurses, keep the nurses we have, stop the bleeding of nurses leaving the hospitals, and ensure our nurses are supported.

Before the negotiations, nurses expressed concerns about how compensation did not match the cost of living in Bend and that it affected the recruitment and retention of nurses.

Oregon Nurses Association Outlines Wage Increases

The details of the wage agreement were outlined as the following:

  • Starting base for BSN nurses will increase by $17.00 per hour over the life of a contract or by 41%.
  • Average base wages for nurses currently on Steps 1 through 5 will increase by 48% over the contract's life, including steps and negotiated increases to the wage scale.
  • Step 10 or higher base wages will increase by 36% per hour by the end of the contract, including steps and negotiated increases to the wage scale.
  • Step 20 or higher will increase 33% per hour by the end of the contract, including steps and negotiated increases to the wage scale.
  • Additional rest and meal break protections were also secured, ensuring they would be granted or compensation earned if not.

Related: Pennsylvania Mandated Ratio Law One Step Closer


According to the statement by Oregon Nurses Association, if approved, these wage increases are "historic" and "key to the recruitment of new nurses."

Amid the ongoing global health crisis, the role of nurses has been thrust into the spotlight, highlighting the importance of recognizing their rights and ensuring their job security. The tentative agreement demonstrates an encouraging trend toward fair labor practices and better conditions for nurses.

This development is significant not only for the ONA but also for healthcare professionals worldwide. It brings the critical issue of nurses' rights to the fore, serving as a valuable case study and a potential catalyst for further dialogue and action in the broader healthcare landscape.

This news was originally reported by Central Oregon Daily News.

(Editorial Team / Admin)

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