2013 News

UMMMC Contract Alert: Talks With University Team Tdday End With No Significant Movement on Staffing or Other Key Issues of Concern

05.03.2013

UMMMC Contract Alert!
 
Talks With University Team Today
End With No Significant Movement on Staffing or Other Key Issues of Concern

Management’s Staffing Proposal Calls for 7 Patient Assignments for Nurses on Nights!!!
 
We are disappointed to report that negotiations with management today ended quickly as management came to the table with a package proposal that, once again, failed to meet our serious concerns about dangerous staffing conditions at UMMMC, while continuing to insist on major benefit takeaways, including rejection of our pension counterproposal, insistence on cuts to our health insurance benefits and reductions in our time-off benefits. 
 
After we have put forth a proposal on staffing that calls for the elimination of 6 patient assignments, a guarantee of no further erosion of staffing levels on all units and a guaranteed limits on assignments for resource nurses, The committee was shocked today when management put forth a long-awaited staffing proposal that rejects our call for no further erosion of staffing levels and – wait for it – would allow and endorse seven patient assignments for all medical-surgical nurses on nights. Keep in mind that we are a Level One Trauma Center, and that St. Vincent Hospital down the street provides a limit of no more than five patients on nights. 
 
While they did improve their resource nurse proposal, without a guarantee against further cuts in staffing and without a limit on nurses patient assignments, their language on resource is of NO value. 
 
As we write this, we continue to receive reports from members of very serious patient care incidents on a number of units as a result of the unsafe conditions now in place. 
 
In response to their actions today we have asked management to go back to the drawing board and come to us with a legitimate package to settle this contract. For our part, we have put forth a fair proposal that protects our patients and our nursing practice with safer staffing provisions, have made a reasonable counterproposal on the pension benefit that preserves this benefit while providing management with the relief they have said is critical, and includes a guarantee of a single bargaining unit and the protection of our union rights. The package also rejects all further concessions demanded by management. 
 
Talks with the Memorial team resume on Monday, where we expect to receive the same proposal from management. If things don’t change, we will be at an impasse and forced to call for a one day strike. 

In light of these developments, we hope people will contact their committee representatives for more information, and to sign up for picketing shits in the event we strike. And all members should join us next Thursday for open meetings at Coral Seafood where important decisions will be made. 
 
 
New Open Meeting Scheduled
Thursday, May 9 at 1:30 & 6 pm
Coral Seafood Restaurant
225 Shrewsbury St. 
For updates on negotiations, decisions on next steps
 
What You Can Do  
 
In the meantime, we encourage all members to stand together and to show their solidarity for this cause by:
  • Wearing black and/or blue scrubs every Wednesday, what we are calling MNA Black and Blue Day, to show our solidarity as nurses stand up against management's dangerous staffing practices and onerous contract proposals.
  • Wearing your "UMMMC Nurses Stronger Together" and the  new "I Will"  Button every day. 
  • Contact your committee representative to sign up for the strike picket schedule.  We are hopeful for a strong settlement with staffing protections, but we must continue to prepare for a strike if management refuses to agree to the protections we and our patients need.

Staying informed by signing up for our email blasts, or by visiting and joining our  "University Messenger" Facebook group page, located at: https://www.facebook.com/massnurses#!/groups/152126544939667/?fref=t  or our  " Memorial-Hahnemann Messenger Facebook group page, located at:  https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/529295190425023/?fref=ts.

FPO