News & Events


MNA Puts Forward Plan That Would Ensure
Your Retirement Security

Last year we engaged the hospital in discussions about the MNA Defined Benefit Pension plan. In the middle of these discussions management announced they were cancelling ALL defined Benefit pension plans associated with Cooley Dickinson, including the nurse’s plan. We filed and won an arbitration where management was forced to restore the nurse’s plan because it is a subject that must be negotiated with the MNA. As we began negotiations on a new contract, management put forward a proposal to end the defined benefit plan and replace it with a defined contribution plan, a significantly inferior benefit which provides no guarantee of lifetime security for our members.

We, on the other hand, have made it clear that we are intent on securing our defined benefit pension plan, not rescinding it. To ensure that is the case, we have made an innovative proposal that will guarantee our members, for both today and tomorrow, the continuation of this benefit. We believe that we can both secure a dignified retirement for ourselves and provide the hospital with economic advantages with our mutual involvement as pension trustees.

Our proposal is to have the hospital and the Registered Nurses at Cooley Dickinson Hospital join the recently established Nurses Pension Fund, a multiemployer defined benefit pension plan that offers the opportunity for our employer to participate in this fund along with other participating hospitals where nurses are represented by MNA. This plan was created as a result of negotiations the MNA completed last November with the Caritas Network and their new owner, Steward Health Care.

What are the benefits of an MNA defined benefit pension plan?

  • Like our current plan, it provides a guaranteed annual benefit (issued in monthly payments) for life.
  • Unlike 401k type plans where fluctuations in the market can cut or even wipe out your benefit, with a defined benefit plan, your retirement income is guaranteed for life.
  • The MNA plan is better for those who must work part-time or step out of the workforce for childcare/family responsibilities.
  • It provides a much stronger return for younger nurses, which improves nurse recruitment and retention.

We all know the hospital is listening to proposals to affiliate with, or be bought by, a larger health care network. We feel the MNA Pension Plan is the ONLY way to guarantee your pension benefit and your retirement security, no matter who owns this facility going forward. With the hospital looking for a suitor, and our contract in negotiation, the timing is right to bring this about. We are excited about our proposal and feel confident it is a reasonable means for our members to retain one of our most important benefits.

Enclosed with this mailing you will find information about the proposal and the plan, along with answers to commonly asked questions. We have also enclosed a recent Time Magazine cover story that highlights the advantages of defined benefit pension plans as a vehicle for building a secure retirement. You can also find more information on this benefit on the Cooley Dickinson Hospital page of the MNA web site. We invite you to contact a member of your MNA negotiating committee to learn more about this opportunity.

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