We, your bargaining team met with management on Nov. 19 for the sixth time. Throughout the morning and early afternoon, we discussed several issues which will have an impact on our wages, hours and working conditions. We were quite disappointed when the Medical Center ended the day early and failed to come back and address our latest proposal. WSNA has made significant movement on a number of issues and the refusal to meet with the WSNA team in the afternoon was unacceptable and does not move us towards a resolution. What are some of the issues at stake?
Per Diems and Supplemental Part-time #
WSNA proposed to place per diems on the wage scale in order to enhance the recruitment and retention of good nurses.
SJMC proposed to eliminate Supplemental Part Time nurses and to reduce pay in lieu of benefits from 15% to 10%. This change means Supplemental Part Time nurses will become per diems and will no longer accrue seniority and will not have the protection from the “just cause” provision (discipline). Per Diems would have a 5 shift/1 full weekend per month obligation and 2 holidays requirement.
WSNA believes these changes are not in the best interest of the bargaining unit and is a takeaway. A two-tiered system is a valuable tool in recruiting nurses who desire more or less of a commitment and are available to work to cover vacations, leaves and other events. The hospital has been unable to adequately articulate why the current two-tiered system is not working.
Clinical Groups #
WSNA proposed to separate the main OR from Walters. This is a significant priority for members working in those areas who feel they are unable to remain competent due to logistics that prevent nurses from adequately cross-training and remaining competent. This creates an unacceptable safety risk. This has been an ongoing issue and it is more evident than ever that it is not sustainable.
SJMC continues to reject this proposal.
Pay in Lieu of Benefits #
SJMC continues to push to reduce this benefit from 15% to 10% stating the new sick leave laws costs too much money. SJMC’s own data demonstrates that the cost is minimal.
Safe Staffing Language #
WSNA proposed language that enhances safe and adequate staffing in the hospital including language that provides staffing to cover vacations, etc. and staffing levels to ensure that charge nurses don’t have to take patient assignments.
SJMC continues to propose that all staffing language is gutted from the contract.
We had a great turn out at our contract negotiations update meetings last week. Thanks to everyone for your support of our team, great questions and eagerness to fight for our rights. Please continue to check our webpage for updates and opportunities to stay involved.
For ideas on how you can support the negotiations team on negotiation days, contact our WSNA Nurse Representative, Sara Frey, at email@example.com or at (206) 575‑7979, ext. 3039.
We are working on many workplace issues #
Changes to South Pavilion and 8/9th floors
We also had great turnouts at our October meetings to discuss SJMC’s proposed changes to the South Pavilion and 8 B/C and 9th. Again, thank you to everyone who gave input. Your participation guides our demands to management, so let’s keep talking – contact Sara Frey.
Violence at SJMC
There have been increased incidences of workplace violence at SJMC recently. Right now, we are fighting for our rights and safety as part of a DOSH investigation. Please contact Sara Frey now to share your experiences with workplace violence at SJMC.
Medication Scanning Problems
We all have problems scanning medications at times, because of unreadable barcodes, broken scanners, unavailable scanners, etc. Some coworkers are being disciplined for incorrect medication administration, when in fact the scanner problems are at fault. Please fill out the Medication Scanning Survey to help us quantify this problem and show SJMC that we need properly working equipment at all times.
We always want to and need to hear from you about these issues, and any others. Please contact Sara Frey or any of our WSNA officers. Contact information is on our breakroom’s WSNA bulletin board.
Upcoming Events #
Please join us at the following events to visit with coworkers, get up to date on workplace issues, review our current contract and ask any questions you have. All events are casual and fun – and snacks are on us!
Questions? Contact any of the negotiation team members, WSNA officers or WSNA Nurse Representative Sara Frey at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (206) 575‑7979, ext. 3039.