RNs - Pennsylvania

No progress reported in Philly nurses strike

Associated Press, April 7, 2010 Philadelphia - Striking nurses and officials of one of Philadelphia's biggest hospitals are reporting no progress after a meeting with a state mediator. About 1,500 nurses and health care professionals have been picketing Temple University Hospital for a week. Their contract expired September 30. The hospital says the union rejected a proposal suggested by the mediator, which the unions says was really a management proposal offered through the mediator. Temple's interim chief executive officer Sandy Gomberg says it would have removed a "non-disparagement" clause barring workers from publicly criticizing the hospital. She says the union's rejection proves that the strike is about economic issues.

Temple Hospital Nurses' Strike Heads Into Second Week

Ian Bush, KYW, April 7, 2010 The Temple University Hospital nurses strike is now entering its second week, with no end in sight. The two sides held face-to-face talks again on Wednesday with a state mediator. The Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals says the union made a concession in its wage proposal, but the hospital refused to budge from its final offer. But Temple University Hospital representatives say their bargaining team would have agreed to settlement proposed by the mediator, which they say was rejected by the union - despite removal of the "non-disparagment" clause. ... Temple

Temple hospital says strikers rejected promising offer

Jane M. Von Bergen, Philadelphia Inquirer, April 7, 2010 Temple University Hospital's interim chief executive officer said Wednesday that the union representing Temple's striking nurses and allied professionals summarily rejected a mediator proposal that, if accepted, would have been taken back to management for review. "The mediator offered what I'll call a mediator-proposed settlement to both sides," Sandy Gomberg said. "If PASNAP had agreed to those terms, the Temple negotiating team would have found them acceptable and brought it back to management." The union said there was no mediator-proposed settlement at Wednesday's meeting between the two sides ... Temple

Striking Nurses: Do Ends Justify the Means?

Valerie Newitt, Advance, April 7, 2010 When nurses go on strike, it can be a thankless undertaking. They may be fighting for an ideal of better patient care, while at the same time walking away from the patients for whom they are caring. It's a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. At Philadelphia's Temple University Hospital (TUH), that scenario is playing out as some 1,500 striking nurses and allied care providers represented by Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals (PASNAP) are walking the picket line, staging rallies and speaking out about the very essence of advocacy ... Striking

Nurses ratify contract with HMC

Chris Sholly, Lebanon Daily News, April 7, 2010 Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and its registered nurses have approved a new contract. The Hershey Medical Center and the Service Employees International Union Healthcare Pennsylvania on March 31 reached a two-year economic agreement for the remainder of a four-year labor pact with the hospital. The nurses voted Monday to ratify the pact. Sean Young, chief marketing officer, declined to disclose any specifics of the agreement. "We are not decreasing salary or wages," he said. "Since this was only an economic reopener, benefits were not negotiated." ... Nurses

1,500 Temple University nurses, health professionals strike over work rule, tuition perk

Kathy Matheson, Associated Press, April 6, 2010 Philadelphia - Hundreds of striking Temple University Hospital nurses and other employees rallied Tuesday in an effort to restart bargaining stalled over contract language that workers say would jeopardize patients, limit free speech and take away a crucial college tuition benefit. The two sides did end up meeting Tuesday, at the request of a state mediator, in the first discussions since before the strike started last week, hospital CEO Sandy Gomberg said. A follow-up meeting may be scheduled later, she said. About 1,000 nurses and 500 professional health workers have been picketing the hospital since March 31 ... 1,500

Fire & Police Union Presidents Support Strikers, while Temple Spends Millions in One Week

PASNAP, April 6, 2010 Today, nearly 800 nurses and other professional staff rallied outside Temple University Hospital, demanding that Temple stop squandering taxpayer dollars on their strikebreaker operation. In addition to the cost of the replacement workers' high-salaries, which can reach over $10,000 per week, the hospital is spending nearly $2 million on the strikebreaker agency overhead, luxury hotel rooms, meals, transportation, extra security and airfare. Temporary replacement workers have been flown in to Philadelphia from 42 states across the country. The union estimates that Temple has spent $5 million over and above their regular costs in the first week of the strike and will pay $4.5 million more per week going forward. ... Fire

MNA Stands Behind 1,500 Striking Temple University Hospital Nurses

Temple Tells Nurses: The Constitution Doesn't Apply to You. Massachusetts Nurses Association, April 5, 2010 "If you want your constitutional rights, you need to go somewhere else." - Robert Birnbrauer, Human Resources, Temple University Hospital. A strike by 1500 nurses, healthcare professional and technical employees at Temple University Hospital represented by the Pennsylvania of Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals began on March 31 after months of bad faith negotiations by the hospital. The employees have been without a contract since its expiration on September 30, 2009 ... MNA

Health care workers in Philadelphia strike for better work conditions and patient care

Marty Harrison, RN, Socialist Alternative, April 3, 2010 1,000 nurses and 500 professional/technical workers at Temple University Hospital struck at 7 AM Wednesday after working without a contract for the last six months. The workers are represented by the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals (PASNAP). The hospital administration has not moved from the “last, best and final” offer it presented to the union in September which includes concessions on union rights, wages, and health insurance. Most vexing to workers is the non-disparagement clause, which states that union members may not say anything negative about the hospital ... Health

Hundreds of Strikers Rally at Temple President Hart's Condo on Rittenhouse Square

PASNAP, April 3, 2010 On the fourth day of the strike by 1500 nurses, healthcare professional and technical employees at Temple, strikers rallied outside Temple President Ann Weaver Hart's luxury condo on Rittenhouse Square. The nurses and professionals have been urging Hart to bargain in good faith so that fair contract agreements with the two striking unions can be reached. "Our working conditions are our patient care conditions. Temple's agenda is to silence us under threat of being fired under their proposed 'gag clause' while reducing the working conditions that we have worked under for decades. ...," said Patricia Eakin, RN, Emergency Room nurse at Temple. ... Hundreds

Nurses' union: Felon recruiting temps

Mensah M. Dean, Philadelphia Daily News, April 3, 2010 The union that represents striking nurses at Temple University Hospital charged yesterday that the company the hospital hired to recruit temporary nurses is operated by a felon with a history of questionable business practices. The rhetoric came on the third day of a strike that has 1,500 nurses and other employees on picket lines as hospital management stands its ground. "We respect the union's right to strike. However, I am very disappointed in this labor union's attempts to frighten our patients and distract the focus from the real issues on the table," Sandy Gomberg, chief executive officer of Temple University Hospital ... Nurses

Temple University Hospital Continues to Provide Uninterrupted Quality Care (sic)

Temple University Hospital, April 3, 2010 Philadelphia - There are only two parties to the current labor dispute – PASNAP and Temple University Hospital (TUH). TUH is located at Broad & Ontario, in North Philadelphia. There is no reason for PASNAP to have attempted a disruption at Rittenhouse Square today. The strike against TUH is about wages and benefits only. Temple University Hospital's Last, Best and Final offer is fair, reasonable and competitive in the marketplace. Our nurses make an average of $39.80 an hour – which is among the highest in the region. ... Temple

Striking Temple nurses question fill-ins’ credentials

Linda Loyd, Philadelphia Inquirer, April 2, 2010 Striking registered nurses and health professionals on Friday called on Temple University Hospital to document credentials of the 850 temporary workers recruited to tend to patients since the walkout began Wednesday. The union said it had received "dozens of reports" of "problems with patient care," Maureen May, president of the Temple Nurses Union, said at a briefing outside the hospital on North Broad Street. "We want the Department of Health to investigate," said Patricia Eakin, registered nurse in Temple Hospital's emergency room and statewide president of the Pennsylvania Association ... Striking

Nurses on strike concerned about patients

Kerry Grens, WHYY, April 2, 2010 On their third day of striking, Temple University Hospital nurses voiced concerns about the quality of care patients are getting from fill-in staff. As a crowd of nurses chants outside Temple Hospital, temporary staff is inside caring for patients. The hospital brought in nurses recruited by a California-based company. Union leaders say they've heard reports from staff not on strike that the quality of care has been compromised because the new team is inexperienced with the hospital's routines. Maureen May, president of the Temple Nurses Assocation, spoke to reporters on the picket line. ... Nurses

Striking Temple nurses want proof that replacements are competent

John George, Philadelphia Business Journal, April 2, 2010

Temple University Hospital’s striking nurses are holding a press conference Friday to ask the North Philadelphia medical center to verify that replacement nurses hired by Temple have had their competencies properly validated.

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