RNs - Minnesota

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Historic Strike - Minnesota Nurses Stand Up for Patient Care

Ryan Timlin, Socialist Alternative, June 23, 2010 In the largest nurses’ strike in US history, 12,000 walked out of 14 Twin Cities (Minnesota) hospitals on June 10th, and are set to strike again. Prepared by months of big informational pickets, billboard ads, and internal organizing, the 24 hour strike was solid. The chants on the large and lively picket lines were frequently drowned out by honking cars showing the broad public support. Still the hospitals are refusing to budge. Thousands of nurses responded on June 21st with a strong vote of 84% for an open-ended strike. ... Historic

Nurses vote for 2nd strike

Nurses and the hospitals have agreed to meet with a federal mediator this week. Kyle Potter, Minnesota Daily, June 23, 2010 Just 11 days after walking out of their hospitals for one day, metro area nurses have voted to strike again. More than 84 percent of Minnesota Nurses Association members voted Monday to approve a second strike. They are willing to walk again, this time for as long as it takes if they cannot finalize a new contract with their employers. By Tuesday afternoon, nurses and the hospitals agreed to meet with a federal mediator to resume contract negotiations, hospital spokeswoman Maureen Schriner said. ... Nurses

Nurses, hospitals agree to return to bargaining table Thursday

Workday Minnesota, June 23, 2010 Saint Paul - The day after Twin Cities nurses voted to authorize an open-ended strike, the Minnesota Nurses Association and six hospital systems agreed to return to the bargaining table. A federal mediator will assist in negotiations set for Thursday. “Our nurses look forward to returning to the bargaining table Thursday and are hopeful we can engage in meaningful negotiations with the Twin Cities hospitals,” the Minnesota Nurses Association said. “As we stated prior to this week’s strike vote, we have given our unilateral commitment that we will not give a strike notice as long as productive negotiations are continuing.” ... Nurses

12,000 Minnesota Nurses Ready for Strike

Nellie Munn, Labor Notes, June 22, 2010 Twelve thousand nurses in the Twin Cities are fending off a well-coordinated attack on our union by corporate health care interests. We took a one-day strike June 10 and authorized an open-ended strike by 84 percent Monday night. After the one-day strike, four of the 14 Twin Cities hospitals in bargaining with the Minnesota Nurses Association retaliated with a selective lockout that stretched for days. One hospital told nurses not to report for duty again unless called back, while another closed units and canceled shifts. To implement the selective lockout, hospital security guards forced nurses returning from the strike line into a room ... 12,000

Nurses union, hospitals to meet Thursday at request of federal mediators

But both sides are still preparing for a long-term strike. Jeremy Olson, Saint Paul Pioneer Press, June 22, 2010 Federal mediators are seeking to restart contract talks Thursday between 14 Twin Cities hospitals and the union representing their 12,800 nurses. The request came Monday as nurses, represented by the Minnesota Nurses Association, voted to endorse an open-ended strike of their hospitals if their demands for pay, pension and greater nurse staffing aren't met. Union and hospital leaders confirmed Tuesday that they would attend. Union spokesman John Nemo said it is unclear whether Thursday's meeting will merely set the stage for negotiations or will involve substantial talks ... Nurses

Mediator calls nurses, hospitals back to table

They'll meet Thursday hoping to head off a strike. Chen May Yee, Minneapolis Star Tribune, June 22, 2010 A federal mediator has called Twin Cities hospitals and their nurses back to the negotiating table in a bid to head off what could be a costly and extended work stoppage. Both sides said they have agreed to meet Thursday, though it remains unclear if that would lead to extended talks. The union voted Monday to authorize a strike. "Our nurses look forward to returning to the bargaining table Thursday and are hopeful we can engage in meaningful negotiations with the Twin Cities Hospitals," the Minnesota Nurses Association said ... Mediator

Minnesota nurses approve second strike at 14 hospitals

Associated Press, June 22, 2010 Minneapolis - Thousands of Minnesota nurses have voted to authorize another strike on 14 hospitals in the Minneapolis-Saint Paul area. The Minnesota Nurses Association says 84 percent of nurses voted Monday to authorize an open-ended strike. It was not immediately clear when the strike would begin. The nurses must give the hospitals a minimum of 10 days' notice but could strike anytime after that. About 12,000 nurses went on a one-day strike on June 10, to demand an increase in hospital staffing and no pension cuts. A spokeswoman for the hospitals says the union's staffing proposals are unnecessary and very expensive, but the hospitals are willing to negotiate under certain conditions. No new talks are scheduled. Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press.

Twin Cities nurses resoundingly authorize open-ended strike

Workday Minnesota, June 22, 2010 Saint Paul - In a historic stand for patient safety, 84 percent of Twin Cities nurses voted Monday to authorize an open-ended strike against 14 hospitals if a contract agreement cannot be reached. “This is a vote we never wanted to take,” said Linda Hamilton, a Registered Nurse at Children’s Hospital and president of the Minnesota Nurses Association. “The hospitals forced us to this point by adamantly refusing to address even a single proposal related to patient safety over the past three months of negotiations. But Minnesota nurses will do whatever it takes to protect our patients. We have been and will continue to be united for our patients and safe staffing levels.” ... Twin

Nurses, hospitals still debating how to negotiate

Renee Tessman, KARE, June 19, 2010 Minneapolis - Nurses at 14 Twin Cities hospitals walked off the job for one day on June 10th. This coming Monday, they'll vote on whether they will strike again. But this time, the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) strike would be open-ended. The vote will follow a week of both sides trying to negotiate just how they will start negotiating again. Last Tuesday, the union offered to go back to the bargaining table. The hospitals said yes, if the nurses agreed not to strike, and the hospitals in turn would not lock them out, until after July 31st. ... Nurses

With nurses’ strike vote looming, hospitals offer to resume bargaining – with conditions

Workday Minnesota, June 18, 2010 Saint Paul - With Twin Cities nurses set to vote Monday whether to authorize an open-ended strike, hospitals say they will agree to return to the bargaining table – but with conditions. The group of 14 hospitals said it would accept an offer from the Minnesota Nurses Association to resume negotiations, but only if the union pledges not to strike before July 31. In return, the hospitals said they will not lock out any nurses. The MNA has not yet responded to the hospitals’ proposal, which resulted from letters sent Tuesday, in which the union asked the six hospital systems to come back to the table. ... With

Twin Cities hospitals tell nurses they'll talk with one condition

But the nurses must agree not to strike until at least July 31. The union had no immediate response. Maura Lerner, Minneapolis Star Tribune, June 18, 2010 Twin Cities hospitals say they're ready to go back to the bargaining table with the Minnesota Nurses Association - but only if the union agrees not to strike until at least July 31. The union had no immediate response Thursday to the hospitals' offer, which came two days after the nurses asked to resume talks. But labor relations specialist John Budd thought it was telling that the two sides were still debating whether to meet again. ... Twin

Minnesota nurses union plots next move in labor dispute

Brandon Glenn, MedCity News, June 18, 2010 Minneapolis - The union representing 12,800 Minnesota nurses plotted its next move Friday after a group of Twin Cities hospitals placed conditions on their offer to return to the bargaining table. The group of 14 hospitals said Thursday that they’d resume negotiations, but only if the Minnesota Nurses Association agrees to postpone any strike until after July 31. That may be a tough compromise for the union to swallow since it views the threat of a strike that could cost the hospitals millions as its greatest source of leverage. The hospitals’ latest gambit starkly illustrates how far apart the two sides are ... Minnesota

Minnesota hospitals to return to talks with nurses

Associated Press, June 17, 2010 Minneapolis - A group of 14 Minnesota hospitals are accepting the offer of the Minnesota Nurses Association to resume talks, but under one condition. The hospitals want a pledge from the union not to strike before July 31. In return, the hospitals promise not to lock out any nurses before then. A spokeswoman for the hospitals says in a statement Thursday that the group hopes the pledge will give both sides enough time to reach a deal and avoid another strike. About 12,000 nurses went on a one-day strike on June 10, saying they wanted increased staffing in the hospitals and didn't want cuts to their pension. A vote to authorize another strike is scheduled for Monday.

Union preps nurses on long-term strike ahead of vote

Lorna Benson, Minnesota Public Radio, June 16, 2010 Saint Paul - The Minnesota Nurses Association began briefing its members Wednesday on its open-ended strike strategy. Twin Cities nurses will vote Monday on whether to authorize the union's plan. The stakes are high for hospitals, but also for nurses. An open-ended walkout could cause severe financial hardship for many of them. Both sides are walking a fine line and lots of people are watching. Nurses union spokesman John Nemo says there are lots of links to resources and other advice posted on the union's website as the union prepares its member to weather a long strike. ... Union

'We are the union, the mighty, mighty union.'

Saint Paul Pioneer Press Editorial, June 13, 2010 That was the chant outside of Saint Joseph's Hospital in downtown Saint Paul on Thursday during a one-day strike by the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA). It explains why some people who hold nurses in high esteem don't buy the idea that their fight with Twin Cities hospitals is just about taking better care of sick people. The same kind of fight could involve auto workers in Detroit or steel workers in Pittsburgh, but in this case it happens to be at hospitals in Minnesota. Evidence suggests that the current dispute between the MNA and hospitals isn't only about health care in Saint Paul and Minneapolis, but rather part of a larger, national show of force ... We

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