UPDATE from your local unit officers and Local Unit meeting scheduled

Hello Whidbey WSNA Nurses,

We wanted to take some time at the beginning of the year to introduce ourselves as the various WSNA Officers at Whidbey Health and our Union Rep who work with WSNA on behalf of Whidbey Health Nurses. We also want to empower other Union Members to step in and help be a voice with WSNA and Whidbey Health.

Gwen Parrick is our Chair. She has held this position for quite some time and is a long-time veteran of Whidbey Health. She is often the RN who meets with new nurses and introduces WSNA to them at New Hire Orientation.

Laura Black is a long time Med Surge nurse at Whidbey Health and is our Grievance Officer. She has also been on the negotiations committee for multiple negotiations.

Luka Cobb is a Co-Chair; she was previously a Secretary/Treasurer and has also been part of negotiations for two previous contracts. She is also active on the Staffing Committee.

We currently have openings for a Secretary/Treasurer and another Grievance Officer. If anyone is interested in being a WSNA Officer please reach out and we can provide more information. We also have various Unit Reps. A Unit Rep is a nurse who has volunteered to be involved in Union discussions as representative for their Unit and who can help relay information and concerns between members and the Union. If you are interested in being a Unit Rep please reach out.

Your current unit reps are:

Meaghan O’Driscoll – FBC

Ann Bell - PACU

Dori Painter - PACU

Jennifer Bennett - MAC

Laura Black - MS

Sara Frey is our Union Representative. She works for WSNA and helps advocate for us. She participates in negotiations, grievances, staffing committee, conference committee and general relations between nurses and management as it relates to the Union.

The role of the Union is most often associated with bargaining our contract but there are other ways in which the Union advocates for and supports its members.

Grievances: When a nurse brings to our attention something in the Contract that is not being followed Sara and the Grievance Officer will help investigate how to resolve the issue at the lowest level possible and ensure the contract is being properly administered. They will also help advocate for nurses during investigatory and disciplinary meetings with management.

Staffing Committee: Per Washington Law every hospital is required to have a Staffing Committee that is comprised of nurses and management. This Committee advises the Hospital on safe and appropriate staffing grids for each unit. When ADOs/Unsafe Staffing forms are filled out these are reviewed in Staffing Committee each month. Your participation in this committee directly affects the staffing throughout the hospital and is a great way to get involved and advocate for your unit and fellow nurses. Each unit should have a staffing committee representative. Your time at meetings is paid for and management is required to make you available for these meetings. If your unit doesn’t have a representative and you would like to participate, please contact one of your officers or your nurse rep.

Conference Committee: This committee has been relatively inactive recently due to lack of topics brought forward by members. It is an advisory committee between Nurses and Management. Its role is as a venue for nurses and management to discuss various concerns, policy changes, etc. If you are interested in serving on this committee please let us know. It is also paid and held at a minimum quarterly and is currently scheduled to follow the Safe Staffing committee meeting each month. If you have an issue you would like to discuss in Conference Committee please feel free to reach out to one of us.

As many of you know part of the contract we ratified last year included a "wage reopener." A Lawyer from WSNA has been in contact with the Hospital and this we will be starting this process soon. We have no specific updates at this time but will keep you posted.

As a way of connecting with our Union Members we have decided to hold a virtual Union Meeting on February 22. We look forward to this as an opportunity for you to get to know your Union Officers and hope to recruit more of you to be involved in ongoing Union activities and committees as described above.

This meeting will be held virtually on February 22 from 1– 2 p.m. and 7:30– 8:30 p.m.

If you have concerns or issues ongoing, please reach out to Sara and/or one of the Union Officers or fill out an ADO as appropriate. We do not know there is an issue unless you let us know and we cannot advocate when we don't know there is a problem to advocate for.

Thanks, Luka Mackay, Co-Chair