WSNA: Nurses at The Heart Newsletter #


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What’s in this issue?

  • Our most recent successes
    • A Recent ULP (Unfair Labor Practice) Win for Inves­ti­ga­tory Meetings
    • COVID End-Of-Life Visita­tion Policy Changes
  • Griev­ance Corner and MOU (Memorandum of Under­standing) Updates
  • What’s the Buzz? Bargaining Unit Commit­tees in Action
  • Photo Campaign: Self-Care Slam, Nursing Style

Our most recent unfair labor practice win: investigatory meeting disclosures #

Many nurses recently had accounts of being called into inves­ti­ga­tory meetings (meetings which are by the request of Manage­ment and could possibly lead to disci­pline) without advanced notifi­ca­tion of what the meeting was about. According to Weingarten Rights, the union repre­sen­ta­tive has the right to be informed about the subject matter of the meeting, and to be able to consult privately with the employee before the meeting. Due to lack of disclo­sure around the issue being inves­ti­gated by Manage­ment, this resulted in a limited ability on the part of the local unit offers and/​or Nurse Rep to inform and counsel nurses who were being subject to disci­pline. For the nurses these meetings are already high stress, as many nurses were not made aware of the reason for the meeting until the meeting itself. A ULP (Unfair Labor Practice) was filed with the National Labor Relations Board, on behalf of WSNA Sacred Heart nurses, and we are pleased to announce that they have found merit to our complaints.

This charge is still in the settle­ment process; however, Manage­ment and HR should be disclosing the reason for an inves­ti­ga­tory inter­view as well as the circum­stances to help the nurse and their repre­sen­ta­tive reason­ably prepare and know of the issue in question prior to the meeting. If this is not occur­ring, please reach out immedi­ately to an officer by calling the Voice-Tel line at 866 – 305-5612 or emailing Jaclyn Perkins BSN, RN, at jperkins@wsna.org.

Find infor­ma­tion on how to invoke your Weingarten rights at:
https://​www​.wsna​.org/​u​n​i​o​n​/​r​e​p​r​e​s​e​n​t​a​t​ion-rights.


Successful lobby to change hospital policy: COVID end-of-life visitation #

Up until recently, hospital policy prohib­ited any visitors to end-of-life COVID patients, without excep­tion. On the units caring for these patients, moral injury and burnout were at an all-time high, with nurses watching as patients died alone and without family to hold their hand and say final goodbyes.

Your officer team was able to make the case to manage­ment in August’s Confer­ence Committee that this policy required re-exami­na­tion and change — and they were successful. Together with Manage­ment, your officers were able to directly assist with the policy re-write, and now there is clear policy that allows patients at the end of their lives to safely have a limited number of visitors surround them for final goodbyes. This policy empha­sizes both compas­sion and safety for staff and family and provides relief of the many fears nurses had about themselves dying alone of COVID-19.

Thank you to your officers who fought for this change! Callie Allen, RN, RNC, Alle Mocharro, BSN, RN, Rian Williams, RN, BSN, RNC, Clint Wallace, RN, BSN, CCRN, Darryl Anderson, RN, BSN, CCRN, Alyssa Boldt, RN, BSN, PCCN.


Grievance Corner and MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) update #

Update from the Grievance Corner” -
Grievance Officer, Darryl Johnson, BSN, RN — CICU.
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Pending active grievances: #

  1. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the Endoscopy Unit. Contract viola­tion related to Seniority (4.11) and Schedule Posting (8.6). Griev­ance #20 – 08-0119

    We have heard that Manage­ment has attempted to create a unit-based seniority system on this unit, that is not spoken to in the contract and erodes the current seniority language. This griev­ance is at Step 1.

  2. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the bargaining unit. Contract viola­tion related to Open Positions Posted (9.10) and Float Pool (9.12).
    Griev­ance # 20 – 05-0070

    We have heard that Manage­ment has allowed nurses outside of the bargaining unit to pick up extra shifts and work in supple­mental positions without affording this right to the nurses in the bargaining unit first. Impacted units are CICU, SPU and ICU. This griev­ance is at Step 4.

  3. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the bargaining unit. Contract viola­tion related to Avail­able Open Shifts (8.13). Griev­ance # 20 – 08-0120.

    We have heard that Manage­ment is accepting patient assign­ments and doing direct patient care without giving this work to the nurses in the bargaining unit first. Impacted units are CICU and the ER. This griev­ance is at Step 2.

  4. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the bargaining unit. Contract viola­tion related to Article 6 Wages. Griev­ance # 19 – 02-0019

    We have heard, and it was deter­mined, that Manage­ment placed nurses inappro­pri­ately on the wage scale upon hire. The settle­ment reached during negoti­a­tions has yet to be fulfilled. This griev­ance is going to Mediation.


Resolved Griev­ances Congrat­u­la­tions SHMC Nurses on your recent WINS!”

  1. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the bargaining unit. Contract viola­tion related to Article 10 Paid Time Off and Article 11 Extended Illness Time. Griev­ance # 20 – 05-0066

    We heard from you that the accrual rates to your PTO and EIT changed and were accumu­lating at a lesser amount. Congrat­u­la­tions on your win SHMC nurses! Those nurses who were impacted have seen retro time paid to them which was reflected on their Aug. 7 paycheck. Chantel LaTurner, RN from the 4th floor stood strong in assuring the nurses at Sacred Heart would prevail for this grievance.

  2. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the bargaining unit. Contract viola­tion related to Low Census and Layoff (9.4 in its entirety) Griev­ance # 20 – 05-0063

    We heard from you that Supple­mental nurses were canceled out of turn by Manage­ment. Congrat­u­la­tions on your win SHMC nurses! Those Supple­men­tals who were deter­mined to be wrong­fully canceled, received retro payment for their lost shifts. Sarai Samonsen, MSN, RN, CPN, from 3S raised this issue, and stood by this griev­ance in securing this win.

  3. Associ­a­tion Group Griev­ance (All Affected) filed on behalf of the nurses in the bargaining unit. Contract viola­tion related to Supple­mental Nurses and Part Time Nurses Time Off (10.12) Griev­ance # 20 – 02-0020

    We heard from in lieu nurses that their unpaid time off was not being applied evenly throughout the hospital. It was deter­mined this was, in fact, true. An MOU was reached as means to settle­ment of this griev­ance improving contract language and securing more benefits for the nurses! Congrat­u­la­tions on your win SHMC nurses! Stephanie Othmer, RN, from the ER, held strong and champi­oned this most recent win.


** Any griev­ances that are filed for a nurse individ­u­ally are consid­ered sensi­tive and not disclosed here. WSNA in partner­ship with the WSNA Local Unit Officers work daily to maintain workplace justice and equality. Never hesitate to reach out if a situa­tion feels wrong and you would like to speak with your nurse repre­sen­ta­tive or Local Unit Officers.Reach Jaclyn Perkins, BSN, RN, WSNA Nurse Rep at jperkins@wsna.org.
To reach a Local Unit Officer, call Voice Tel – 1 – 866-305‑5612.

NEW MOUs (Memorandum of Under­standing) hot off the press! 

If you have not read or viewed the new language added to your contract, go to www​.wsna​.org. Click on Union News and Contracts. Scroll down to the Provi­dence Sacred Heart Medical Center listing to find your Local Unit webpage. The document library on this page holds all of your valuable contract language.

New MOUs have been added since June:

  1. COVID-19 Medical Cost Coverage SHMC MOU
  2. COVID MOU SHMC signed
  3. 10.11 Supple­mental and Part-Time Nurses Unpaid Time Off MOU

What’s the Buzz? Committee Updates #

Our commit­tees are hard at work!

Confer­ence Committee

  • Currently seeking clari­fi­ca­tions from Manage­ment on the process staff must go through from COVID-19 exposure to returning to work.
  • Asking for clari­fi­ca­tion on pay code process if exposures were work-related. Also seeking clari­fi­ca­tion on what options are avail­able for caregivers out of work who have no PTO/EIB.
  • Seeking answers regarding nursing testing prior­i­ties and turnaround times, so as to minimize time off work.
  • Some of you asked questions regarding the Testing Our Heroes informed consent. We have asked those questions and are awaiting responses from management.
  • Have reviewed DOSH require­ments and have forwarded union concerns regarding compli­ance to management.


Workplace Violence Committee
The Workplace Violence task force is currently focusing on adapting our new contract language into action. We are working to improve inter­de­part­mental commu­ni­ca­tions and safeguards, including devel­oping safety plans with a toolkit and check­list for both preven­tion and after­care. We are connecting with EPIC advisors to enhance documen­ta­tion between ED, tower and psych, as well as devel­oping a consis­tent WPV reporting process with feedback.


Delegates to the Spokane Labor Council
Two of WSNA Sacred Heart delegates to the Spokane Labor Council, (Jessica Lewellen, RN-BC and Katie Martes, RN, BSN) attended the general body meeting most recently. The Spokane Regional Labor Council is a body of delegates from unions all across the Spokane region who come together in solidarity to forward the goals and better­ment of Unions and their members.

The SRLC is asking for support in monetary contri­bu­tions from its affil­i­ated unions (including WSNA) to produce a special edition of the magazine The Labor World in this trying polit­ical time in order to reach out to union members and provide insight and support regarding candi­dates and the current polit­ical climate. 

The Washington State Labor Council is asking for help in filling out postcards to send to Labor house­holds in antic­i­pa­tion of the upcoming elections and to encourage union house­holds to vote. Please consider signing up to help with this as it is meant to be from labor members to labor house­holds. Please contact Tina Morrison (Secre­tary for the SRLC) at tinam@spokanelabor.org if you are willing to help with this impor­tant project and note how many cards you are able to fill out. Each card only takes a minute or so to complete.

If you are inter­ested in becoming more involved in labor activ­i­ties, want to learn more about your labor rights, or simply want to connect with labor-minded individ­uals, please consider joining the Young Emerging Labor Leaders (YELL), Spokane! We are a group of individ­uals who have a passion for labor and have fun social­izing together. If you are inter­ested in becoming a member of this group or receiving updates on YELL, Spokane activ­i­ties please email Katie Martes, RN, BSN at katemartes@msn.com.


Photo Campaign: Self-Care Slam, Nursing Style! #

We want to hear from you! Snap a photo of you with your WSNA swag on, wearing blue or holding messages of encour­age­ment, doing something you love or in a place that is special to you. Upload that photo to Insta­gram with the hashtags #nursesatthe­heart and show us your sweet kickin’-it-back style! Be sure to include your message of encour­age­ment to your fellow RNs in the body of the post. Mountain­tops, beaches, painting, candles and tea – give others ideas on how they can take care of their spirits during this crazy time. By partic­i­pating in this fun campaign, you are giving WSNA permis­sion to utilize your selfie for future publi­ca­tions. You might find your awesome picture and messages featured in our next newsletter!