Published Aug 4, 2005
I started a new job in May working weekends. On Sunday, one of the senior nurses pulled me aside and asked me how I liked working there. Long story short, some of the nurses are interested in getting unionized, primarily to ensure mandatory staffing. They are having meetings with union representatives and eventually will have a vote. The RNs and LPNs will have their own seperate unions, the techs will not be union. What are your thoughts on unions? Are they a help or hinderance? I worry that if we go union TPTB will take away the weekend program with premium pay, esp if they are forced to hire agency to fill open spots. I am happy working there and would hate to see that happen. Any and all opinions are welcomed!
I started a new job in May working weekends. On Sunday, one of the senior nurses pulled me aside and asked me how I liked working there. Long story short, some of the nurses are interested in getting unionized, primarily to ensure mandatory staffing. They are having meetings with union representatives and eventually will have a vote. The RNs and LPNs will have their own seperate unions, the techs will not be union. What are your thoughts on unions? Are they a help or hinderance? I worry that if we go union TPTB will take away the weekend program with premium pay, esp if they are forced to hire agency to fill open spots. I am happy working there and would hate to see that happen. Any and all opinions are welcomed!Thanks!
I think there may be others posts on this if you search it but I just started nursing been on my floor for 2 years and the hospital is unionized. I really don't know if it helps or not. I think overall it does. I feel if it was not there managemnt would pull mandatory overtime. Right now the union steps in if there are issues with it but I have not experienced that. I've been their 2 years and I have never worked a double shift. Supervisors ask but I say no. And right now I work 32hr/wk with full time benefits which is awesome. And if I work over 8hrs for my shift I get ovetime pay thanks to our union contract. NOW technically b/c i'm 32hr week the hospital does not have to pay this but b/c of the union contract it does thank goodness. People that were there before the union said it was horrible between management and the nurses and I think specifically the staffing.
However some issues I had with the union was people in the weekend program. We are so short staffed and we had one weekend person come in on a Fri still getting the weekend pay for it. It was on my shift and honestly I was glad to just see another body on the floor! Well day shift nurses and one was a former union rep brought it to the manager and union that they are not allowed to do that and as a result that nurse doesn't work the fri and we are short a nurse. See it's done like that supposedly to be fair b/c the weekend program gets paid extra money than the FT staff. However really what is wrong with one freakin day. Then I was originally hired as float and on orientation wanted to stay on the one floor. Then my manager said i couldn't due to the union b/c I'd have to stay in one position 1 full year. I don't know if it was the manager or the union. But another nurse did the same thing so i fought it and got to stay. So in some ways the union I feel can be too restricting. On the other hand if there is NOTHING i'm afraid we would get taken advantage.
Are there issues were you work other than mandatory staffing which my be enough to get support just for that anyway?
i heard union hospitals pay better
gwenith, BSN, RN
The activism forum is absolutely chockers with thread on pro-anti unionism. Me, I am from Aust and we are FAR FAR more unionised than you are - this has won us some great concessions. We don't have mandated ratios but the union will and does go into bat for us to maintain nursing standards, introduce zero violence policies, no lift policies and other things that most are not even aware of.
Faeriewand, ASN, RN
My husband is a supervisor at his job (mental health, government) but here are a few thoughts I've heard from him on union. They have to have a really really good reason to fire someone. Can't do it just on a personality clash. They have to have a good reason to not hire a well qualified candidate.
Some years ago my husband was on a panel to hire new employees. Qualified candidates have to have a Masters degree and hopefully be licensed LCSW, MFCC. Everyone is well educated and a professional right? So a fellow walks into the interview with no tie, his shirt unbottoned and wearing a gold chain (yup not kidding here) the supervisors discuss that although he looks good on paper, he seemed a little flip in his responses and they are offended that he didn't dress up for the interview (we're talking professional office) they decide to tell the guy that they could offer him the job but did he know that the government agency was having money problems and all their jobs could be ending in a year or less? (more or less true but they really play it up) The man decides not to take the job-everyone is happy. :) That was about 7 years ago and the jobs are just now being pink-slipped. :chuckle
YES! Suposedly the union I am in gaurds against letting an employee go.
My father was in a steel union and that was visious. I applied or ran for a position and was threatened by other steel union people so is that some negative aspect some people feel about them? While he was upset with that he still supports unions b/c you can get really taken advantage. People use the term unions were only needed for the time when we worked in coal mines in the early 1900s but seriously don't tell me everything is hunky dorey without something looking out for workers. Look what the our current president administration did. Trying to classify nurses as professionals and other works to pay salary pay and not pay overtime. It's disgusting so while I'm not 100% sure the union itself may hinder employees at times NOTHING will cause lots of problems.
This is true. Union RN's make, on average, $7,000 more a year than non-union RN's.
I just started a job a few months ago that is union. While the LPN and the RN have different unions I am so glad I am in a union. Our union reps go to bat for us all the time. We just broke up into work groups and one of the stipulations was that you could not trade with anyone outside your work area but management was scheduling us to work outside our work areas. That would not be so bad except that there is only one other nurse that I can trade shifts with in my work area. We grieved this to the union and the next day we were all assigned within our work areas. There have also been incidents were a new nurse was hired for a full time position but a more senior nurse had applied for it. She grieved this and they had to give her a full time position also. We just settled our contract and the union stood firm and we got what we were asking for. If it had not been for the union our insurance would have went up and we would not have gotten a pay raise either. There are some disadvantages like bad co-workers who they can't fire without keeping months of documentation and that can be bad sometimes but on the other hand you know that they can't just call you in and fire you just because. I work in a state where the employer can let you go for no reason so having the union prevents that from happening. If you are worried about the weekends then when the union forms they can put that in the union contract and then your job will be safe. Good Luck
purplemania, BSN, RN
I think they are great for people who cannot think for themselves.
Well, if you're so smart, think about this ...
According to the U.S. labor department, union workers on average made $9,000 more last year than non-union workers across the board.
Union teachers made $11,000 more a year than non-union teachers.
Union RN's made $7,000 a year more than non-union RN's.
So ... for people who supposedly can't think for themselves, they certainly are banking more money than their non-union colleagues.
Well, if you're so smart, think about this ...According to the U.S. labor department, union workers on average made $9,000 more last year than non-union workers across the board.Union teachers made $11,000 more a year than non-union teachers.Union RN's made $7,000 a year more than non-union RN's. So ... for people who supposedly can't think for themselves, they certainly are banking more money than their non-union colleagues.
WHAT ABOUT union LPN'S how much more did they make on average??
I am just now taking my prerequisites.....almost finished and getting ready to take the TEAS, but I am changing careers!! Have previously been a member for 25 years of (believe, it or not!!) Ironworkers....I was one of the very first women to go into that trade. There are good things and bad things about unions.....this year as I retired.....HALF of my pay was going for Union Dues, Assessements, and health and insurance. I made 24.50 and hour and take home(after all taxes, and insurance and ASSESSMENTS(which goes to union and so much out of every dollar you make) I was bringing home about $560, $420 for the government and the union. Like any organization....politics gets involved and the people that make the most are all the union officials....they are just like fat cat politicians. They are run much like our government. I hope I can come into nursing and get paid for what I do....BUT I would like to take the biggest part home....believe me.....you end up with union dues, assessments...paying to get started with the union,(that was $250) so just imagine paying them about like you pay income taxes. The biggest part I didn't care for was the insurance....doesn't matter if you are covered under your spouses insurance or not....you HAD to pay the insurance. Several things get out of the people's control and into the political side of the unions. I think when they try to get you to vote in the union....you are hearing most of the benefits.....and very few of the downside. If I HAD to join the union to get a job I wanted....I guess, I would have to see what the job's benefits were...But I really HOPE I never have to be in another union again. I retired last month...so the last MONTH dues I paid....was $29.75. That is not taken out of your check...you pay that like a bill. Most unions have almost all the same characteristics. Yes, they tell you unionized people make more money...but they don't tell you how much of that your going to be paying out.Ok....off the soapbox....before I really get going. Good luck!!
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