Day 8 of negotiations completed

On Oct. 20 we had another disappointing day at the bargaining table. Management’s wage proposal was 3.5% effective the first pay period after ratification if we reach a tentative agreement by Nov. 1, 2021, otherwise it will be the second full pay period, and 2.5% & 2.25% the full pay period Nov. 1, 2022 and Nov. 1, 2023, respectively.

WSNA stressed to management how important it is to provide an incentive to night shift nurses to retain experienced nurses on night shift and proposed incentives that would help do just that. Management’s response was telling us our proposed increase to the shift differentials is not what is “market” and refused to increase the shift differential period. No proposal at all from them to give incentive for nurses to work nights.

Save the date: Informational picket on Nov. 3

Bring out your signs, your coworkers, and your voice: On Nov. 3, we’re doing an informational picket to tell management that their proposals are not anywhere close to enough.

For the last few weeks, we’ve seen nurses sticker up to support their bargaining team, share stories about the lack of safety at work, and unanimously vote on Monday the 18th that management needs to do more, do better. Saint Joe’s nurses are ready to take action.

There will be two informational picket sessions on Nov. 3: 7-9 a.m., and 11 a.m. -2 p.m. We’re asking as many nurses as possible to sign the Info Picket Pledge that is currently being circulated – ask your WSNA Unit Rep if you haven’t signed it yet! Even if you’re working that day, dropping in for ten minutes on your lunch break makes a world of difference.

We’ll have another announcement this week with more details. We’ll see you on Nov. 3!

Save the date: Info-picket poster party on Oct. 25

Break out your craft supplies and slogans for the Oct. 25 info picket sign making party! Bring some coworkers and your creativity to help make some signs that show management, patients, and the community why we’re calling on St. Joe's to do better. We’ll have some supplies for you, but feel free to bring your own.

Location TBD – stay tuned!

WSNA nurses speak in unanimous voice

When we counted our ballots Monday evening, we found one yes vote. We thought a nurse had cast a ballot saying yes, management was doing enough. However, we soon learned, it was a mistake, a result of a very short staffed day at work. Eren Nguyen from Med-Surg just stepped up to be a Unit Rep for his department. Here’s what he said after he realized what happened.

“All I can say is that it was a VERY long day Monday. After a really tough shift where we had no charge nurse and all of us had 5 patients, with one nurse having 6 with a resident, I was so exhausted. But it was important to me to come and stand with our WSNA team. It was 7:50pm by the time I got there, and I checked the wrong box because I was so tired. I want to confirm that I think management needs to do better. We are all united in this.”

“Helping Hands” aren’t a replacement for safe staffing

On Oct. 17, St. Joe’s sent out an email to staff asking them to join the “Helping Hands Program”. This volunteer program includes duties such as answering call lights, stocking supply carts, answering phones, and making coffee.

Instead of safely staffing the hospital, St. Joe’s is asking already overworked nurses to make coffee on their time off. The email also invited community members to participate – saying the only qualifications were time and a desire to help. This is a disaster waiting to happen. Having non-medical volunteers answer call lights puts patients at risk and opens nurses to any number of risky situations.

St. Joe’s knows that safe staffing is critical to a hospital running smoothly – they just don’t want to pay for it.

In Solidarity,
your negoti­ating team: Dian Davis, Linda Burbank, Yunna Flenord, Brandon Hardaway, Katy Heffernan, Matthew McGuire, Shelly Pollock, Chelsey Roos, Emily D’Anna, Ken Richardson, Sally Budack, Naomi Kincade

Questions? Contact WSNA Nurse Repre­sen­ta­tive Barbara Friesen at bfriesen@wsna.org.