Labor Action

The Power of Collective Bargaining

As a union member of an MNA local bargaining unit, nurses and health professionals in Massachusetts enjoy the power and protection of collective bargaining and collective action.

The MNA believes that professional nurses must be able to practice under terms and conditions which enable them to deliver the best possible patient care, and which provide them with the best possible rewards for delivering it.

The right to organize a union is a protected activity under both state and federal laws. Once unionized, members create a democratic workplace. Through legally protected collective action and contract language, members have the power to secure benefits and working conditions that promote quality patient care and foster professional growth.

To assist nurses in achieving these goals, the MNA provides a large and experienced staff of labor negotiators, advocates, organizers, researchers and educators to help nurses in all facets of workplace advocacy: from advice on exercising their legal employment rights to negotiating and enforcing employment contracts, to building community and political support for nursing and patient care issues.

As a result of this activity, MNA union members are the highest paid nurses in the state and among the highest paid in the nation, with a host of industry-leading benefits and protections guaranteed by their union contracts.

MNA Unions Improve Nursing Practice

MNA union members have negotiated landmark contract language to:

  • Prevent mandatory overtime and mandatory on call.
  • Prevent the replacement of nurses with unlicensed personnel.
  • Prevent the common management practice of using “float” nurses inappropriately.
  • Regulate the introduction of new technologies.
  • Establish staffing guidelines and ratios.
  • Improve health and safety (i.e. safer needle systems, workplace violence prevention and safe patient handling initiatives).
  • Provide new benefits such as HIV insurance and retiree health insurance.