What happened at negotiations this week?

Noelle Pacu

We had a very productive meeting last night

Thank you all who were able to attend. This is a time for us all to be united as one. Our next meetings will be held after our Oct. 9 negotiation date.

Save the dates and plan on attending one of these meetings on Oct. 10 from 7:30-9 p.m. and Oct. 11 from 7:30-9 a.m., location to be determined.

The key moving forward is that we all stand together with one voice.

Please wear blue on Oct. 4 and Oct. 9 to support us, your negotiation team and continue to take pictures of nurses on your unit holding signs of support and unity and send them to cgarrison@wsna.org.

ED assailant charged with assault

The Benton County Prosecutor’s Office has filed charges against the patient who assaulted three nurses, one physician and a security officer on Sept. 9. We applaud the prosecutor for recognizing the seriousness of the incident and the nurses who stepped forward: Jessica Murphy, Karina Bethje and Michael Trunkey.

This is another significant step in our efforts to #EndNurseAbuse now—at Kadlec and across the state and nation.

What takeaways were proposed by management? What progress did we make on workplace safety?

Day two negotiation update:
On the afternoon of our second day, we finally received some of Management’s opening proposals. Proposals are merely management’s wishes; their opening gambit. Your bargaining team is ready for the long fight to come.

Major benefit cuts proposed:
Management is proposing major cuts and premium increases to medical benefits. Late on day two, management finally provided some of their opening proposals, which include:

  • Eliminating The Employer’s Payment of 70% of the cost of dependent coverage for part-time employees;
  • Tying future medical premium to what a “majority” of employees pay, and raising the premium rate increases for full-time employees from 7% to 15% per year for 2019, and 2020;
  • Eliminating the last fully paid employer premium for the Hospital’s core plan in 2020, cutting the Employer contribution to 95%; and
  • Reserving the right to impose further cuts and changes during the Agreement.

While management also proposed a parental leave program which they have yet to fully explain, this hardly offsets the proposed cuts. We, your bargaining team will be aggressively forcing management to turn over the detailed data on their Plan, and stand united in opposition to these cuts!

Workplace Violence challenged with demands for change:
Your bargaining team demanded immediate talks on fixing the major security lapses at Kadlec, exemplified by the recent incidents in ED and ICU. Christine Watts, WSNA’s Senior Director of Labor, laid out a powerful argument that Kadlec is falling far short of protecting its nurses. Relying on WSNA survey responses, and the terrible recent incidents, your bargaining team demanded we meet next week to intervene immediately. In addition, your brave nurses who have been recent victims have stepped forth to speak to the media and post to the internet to raise the entire Nation’s awareness of this critical issue.

Contract termination – no reason to worry:
Kadlec’s communication of yesterday appears calculated to make you worry about WSNA’s notice to terminate your current contract on Nov. 11. Do not be concerned. While the termination of the CBA allows WSNA to take more aggressive action to support its demands, and temporarily limits arbitrations, Federal Law guarantees that all your working conditions, wages and other rights will remain intact. In short, you will notice no change at all in your working conditions.

Your bargaining team is fighting hard on what may be a long road to defeat takeaways and achieve your bargaining priorities; we will be strong, smart and strategic. Be patient and we will keep you fully informed.

Upcoming dates of negotiations are Oct. 4, Oct. 9 and Oct. 15. We are currently looking for more dates.

Kellie And Denise At Outpt Imaging

How often do you see or experience violence in your unit?
Add your voice
to our Workplace Violence & Safe Staffing Survey.

Thanks to all who stopped by the cafeteria today to share your concerns about staffing and workplace safety. Your commitment to your profession and your patients are inspiring! We enjoyed meeting and hearing from you.”
— WSNA Senior Director of Labor Christine Watts, MN, RN and WSNA Occupational and Environmental Health Specialist Karen Bowman, MN, RN, COHN-S

In solidarity,

Your negotiating team:

Jacob Garcia (CDU)
Martha Galvez (Birth Center)
Vanessa Douglas (ICU)
Toni Ledridge (PAS)
Kathy Peot (Resource)
Marianne Sturtevant (OR)
Meri Bukovinsky (CDU)
Joyce McMurphy (NICU)
(Anthony) Tony Jones (Cath Lab)
Joy Barclay (DI)

For any questions, contact WSNA Nurse Representative Carmen Garrison at cgarrison@wsna.org or at 206-575-7979, ext. 3113.