RNs - Minnesota

Nurses concerned over conduct code in labor talks

Associated Press, August 31, 2010 Duluth - Nurses in Duluth negotiating a labor contract with a local hospital say a proposed code of conduct could be used to silence or intimidate employees. The code proposed by Saint Luke's Hospital bans inappropriate behavior, such as profanity or sexual advances. It also prohibits overt behaviors, such as verbal outbursts or "quietly exhibiting uncooperative attitudes during routine activities." Examples include a condescending voice or impatience with reasonable questions. The nurses bargaining unit chairwoman Cindy Prout says if a nurse was strongly advocating for a patient, it could be interpreted in the wrong manner and the employee would be subject to discipline.

Duluth nurses object to proposed code of conduct

Bob Kelleher, Minnesota Public Radio, August 31, 2010 Duluth - A final round of contract negotiations takes place Tuesday for more than 400 registered nurses who work at Saint Luke's Hospital in Duluth. The talks will focus on a proposed code of conduct opposed by the nurses' union. Staffing issues are the main issue in the contract dispute between the nurses union and the two main hospitals in Duluth - Saint Luke's and the SMDC Health System. But nurses at Saint Luke's haven't held back their distaste for the code of conduct proposal. An entry in a Minnesota Nurses Association blog calls it a "direct attempt to silence and intimidate nurses." ... Duluth

Nurses, Duluth Hospitals Headed Back To Bargaining Table

WNMT, August 20, 2010 Duluth - Federal mediators have called negotiators for the nurses union and two Duluth hospitals back to the bargaining table, two days after nurses authorized a one-day strike on a date to be determined. A tentative meeting between the union and Saint Mary's Duluth Clinic is set for next Wednesday and a similar session with Saint Luke's Hospital is scheduled for Thursday. The nurses union can issue a strike notice at any time, but leaders say their intent remains to avoid a strike and reach a settlement.

Mediators call back Duluth nurses, executives to bargaining table

Mary Vanac, MedCity News, August 20, 2010 Duluth - Federal mediators have called nurses and business executives at two Minnesota, hospitals back to the bargaining table next week. Earlier this week, 1,300 nurses in Duluth overwhelmingly voted to approve a one-day walkout to protest stalled contract negotiations with Saint Luke’s Hospital and Saint Mary’s Medical Center. At issue are two patient safety issues, according to the Minnesota Nurses Association: the option for a nurse to refuse an unsafe patient assignment, and the ability of a nurse to temporarily close his or her unit to new admissions during an unsafe staffing situation. ... Mediators

Duluth nurses, hospitals to go back to bargaining tables

A tentative meeting between SMDC nurses and hospital administrators has been scheduled for Wednesday, according to the Minnesota Nurses Association, the union representing the 958 registered nurses at SMDC and 420 at Saint Luke’s. Duluth News Tribune, August 20, 2010 Federal mediators have called for Duluth nurses and managers for SMDC Health System and Saint Luke’s Hospital to return to the bargaining table next week. A tentative meeting between SMDC nurses and hospital administrators has been scheduled for Wednesday, according to the Minnesota Nurses Association, the union representing the 958 registered nurses at SMDC and 420 at Saint Luke’s. ... Duluth

Mediators call Duluth nurses back to the table

Associated Press, August 20, 2010 Duluth - Federal mediators have called Duluth nurses and negotiators for two area hospital systems back to the bargaining table. The Minnesota Nurses Association says in a news release Friday that talks between nurses and hospital administrators for SMDC Medical Center are tentatively scheduled for Wednesday. Likewise, nurses for Saint Luke's Hospital are tentatively set to talk with the hospital's negotiators on Thursday. Earlier this week, nurses at the two hospital systems voted to authorize a one-day strike. However, the union hasn't notified the hospitals of a strike date. Staffing levels are a key sticking point. The disputes are similar to what prompted a one-day strike in the Twin Cities in June.

Duluth nurses reject contract, authorize one-day strike

Boua Xiong, Northland's NewsCenter, August 18, 2010 The Minnesota Nurses Association said 90 percent of voting nurses at SMDC and 86 percent of voting nurses at Saint Luke's rejected the contract. The union won't say how many nurses voted Wednesday but said there is a clear message with such huge numbers rejecting the contract. "We hope that the employer will come back to the table and understand that we are unified as a group to make things better for the patient," Steve Strand, a registered nurse at SMDC, said. ... Duluth

Duluth nurses voting on contract offer, one-day strike

Bob Kelleher, Minnesota Public Radio, August 18, 2010 Duluth - More than 1,300 Duluth nurses are voting today on final contract offers from the city's two hospital groups. Union organizer Dan Engelhart said a "steady stream" of nurses were voting at Duluth's United Methodist Church, which overlooks downtown. Red-shirted union negotiators were on hand to field questions from nurses before they voted, and the atmosphere was festive, with people talking over baked goods and coffee. ... Duluth

Strike or settle? Duluth nurses to vote Wednesday

After tough negotiations in the Twin Cities, three hospitals and 1,320 nurses in Duluth are clashing over staffing language. Chen May Yee, Minneapolis Star Tribune, August 17, 2010 More than a month after Twin Cities hospitals and nurses settled their most bitter contract dispute in recent history, a similar battle is playing out in Duluth. Some 1,320 nurses who work for Saint Mary's Medical Center, SMDC Medical Center and Saint Luke's Hospital in Duluth are set to vote Wednesday whether to ratify a three-year contract or stage a one-day walkout. ... Strike

Duluth – SMDC Bargaining Update

Minnesota Nurses Association, August 13, 2010 In our last scheduled bargaining session with management of SMDC we started out cautiously optimistic. Ultimately we ended without an agreement we can recommend. We are recommending that you reject this contract and vote to authorize a one day strike. It is clear that a strong strike vote is what we will need to move SMDC to respect us as nurses. Management has told us they are going to change and improve staffing at SMDC. It is clear that we need to make sure that management follows through on its promises in writing, and the language we have in our last, best offer from SMDC does not allow us that. ... Duluth

SMDC and Nurses: Stalemate

Renee Passal, WDIO, August 13, 2010 More than 900 SMDC nurses are being encouraged to vote August 18th to reject the administration's contract offer and instead authorize a one-day strike. "The bottom line is, the executives at the bargaining table have made it clear to us that management does not trust its nurses with the well-being and safety of our patients," said Steve Strand, an RN at SMDC. "It's ironic considering nurses are the most trusted professionals in the United States. And we are not asking for anything costly, outrageous or unusual." ... SMDC

Duluth Nurses Prepare For Strike Vote

WCCO, August 13, 2010 More than 900 SMDC Medical Center nurses are being asked to vote August 18 to reject their administration's offer and authorize a one-day strike, the Minnesota Nurses Association announced Friday. The MNA says this is happening after months of negotiations and a "refusal by SMDC Medical Center business executives to put their rhetoric about patient safety issues into writing." "The bottom line is, the executives at the bargaining table have made it clear to us that management does not trust its nurses with the well-being and safety of our patients," said Steve Strand, an RN at SMDC. ... Duluth

Duluth nurses get ready for strike, some express concern - video

Boua Xiong, Northland's NewsCenter, August 13, 2010 Duluth nurses have already held two informational pickets but soon it could be for real. A strike could be imminent because the union and hospital management can't come to terms on a union demand to allow nurses to determine when enough patients are enough. "We don't wish to go on a strike but we feel that we need to show that we are one body that will work together to do the right thing for patients," Steve Strand, a registered nurse at SMDC, said. ... Duluth

MNA Prepares to Strike Again ... This Time in Duluth

900 Nurses encouraged to reject current offer. FOX 9 News, August 13, 2010 Duluth - In a statement released by the Minnesota Nurses Association Friday afternoon, the union says more than 900 nurses in the Duluth area are being encouraged to vote August 18th to reject the SMDC's contract offer and instead authorize a one-day strike. In addition to the 900 nurses at SMDC, 420 RNs at Saint Luke's Hospital in Duluth are also in the midst of contract bargaining and so far have been unable to reach an agreement. While SMDC nurses have no more negotiating sessions scheduled, Saint Luke's RNs will meet one final time with management August 16th ... MNA

Nurses union lobbies for one-day Duluth strike

Business North, August 13, 2010 More than 900 SMDC nurses are being encouraged to vote Wednesday to reject the company's contract offer and authorize a one-day strike, the Minnesota Nurses Association said in a Friday news release. "The executives at the bargaining table have made it clear to us that management does not trust its nurses with the well-being and safety of our patients," said Steve Strand, an RN at SMDC. No further bargaining sessions are scheduled. RNs at Saint Luke's Hospital are also bargaining and have not reached an agreement. RNs will meet with management Monday. Both groups of nurses will vote Wednesday to either ratify their contract offers or authorize a one-day strike at each facility, MNA said.

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