RNs - District of Columbia

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Nurses' labor dispute reflects tensions

Nurses hope union affiliation will give them more clout. Lena H. Sun, Washington Post, October 10, 2010 Washington - It was bad when the Washington Hospital Center fired 18 nurses during last winter's blizzards. It got worse when the nurses union and management failed to negotiate a new contract in the summer. Then a week ago, the hospital effectively cut take-home pay for most nurses. As WHC nurses voted overwhelmingly Tuesday night to join the largest nurses union in the country, labor relations at the area's biggest hospital were tense. "People are really angry," said one veteran nurse, referring to the way hospital officials forced through a plan that increases base pay but cuts shift pay ... Nurses

Washington Hospital Center RNs Join Nation's Largest Nurses' Union To Strengthen Voice For Patients, RN Standards

Medical News Today, October 8, 2010 Registered nurses in Washington DC's largest hospital, Washington Hospital Center, have voted to join National Nurses United, the nation's largest union and professional association of RNs. Nearly 1,600 WHC nurses, who have been in the independent organization Nurses United of the National Capital Region will now be a part of NNU. Approved in a secret ballot membership vote of the nurses conducted Sunday through Tuesday, the affiliation, Nurses United members say, will give them a stronger voice in contract talks with a recalcitrant employer, and additional clout in fighting to improve patient care and RN standards in the District. ... Washington

Washington Hospital Center nurses prepared to strike

Lizzie Horne, WTOP, August 3, 2010 Washington - Nurses United of the National Capital Region are planning a one-day strike at Washington Hospital Center. The 24-hour unfair labor practice protest comes as a response to the firing of 18 nurses during February's snowstorm. Union spokesman Stephen Frum, a nurse at the hospital, says the date of the strike will be announced this week in order to give the hospital management 10 days notice. ... Washington

Nurses Vote to Strike Over February Blizzard Firings

Kim Chi Ha, Washington City Paper, August 3, 2010 Even in sweltering August heat, this year's earlier pesky blizzard won't go away. Over the weekend, Nurses United, a union that represents 1,600 registered nurses at Washington Hospital Center (WHC), voted for a one-day strike. The union is demanding that the nurses who were fired following February's massive winter storms for not making it through the snow to work be reinstated with back pay, and that management ensures it doesn't violate hospital policies again. The in-person secret ballot took place over a period of three-days, from Thursday to Saturday. ... Nurses

Nurses to strike over snowstorm firings

Lena Sun, Washington Post, August 2, 2010 The union representing 1,600 nurses at Washington Hospital Center voted overwhelmingly over the weekend to approve a one-day strike to protest the firing of 18 nurses who failed to report to work during and after the February snowstorms, a union spokeswoman announced Monday. With 675 nurses voting, members voted 526-147 in favor of a one-day strike, more than the two-third majority required. Two members abstained. Nine of the nurses have since returned to work. The union had argued that hospital used unfair labor practices when it fired the nurses for not reporting to work. ... Nurses

New fallout from hospital snowstorm firings

Ben Fischer, Washington Business Journal, August 2, 2010 It's the middle of summer, but fallout from February's historic snowstorms continue to reverberate at the region's largest hospital. On Saturday, members of the Nurses United of the National Capital Region union at Washington Hospital Center voted to authorize a one-day protest strike, to protest continued inaction on an unfair labor practice complaint stemming from the storms. If you'll remember, the hospital fired 21 workers for not reporting to work during the storms, which effectively shut down commerce in the District. ... New

Nurses reject Washington Hospital contract

Lena Sun, Washington Post, June 28, 2010 The union representing 1,600 registered nurses at Washington Hospital Center voted overwhelmingly over the weekend to reject a new contract. The vote, which came after three months of negotiations, was 987 to 21. The nurses are now working without a contract; their current contract expired June 19. The union, Nurses United of the National Capital Region, had made safe staffing levels the key issue in 13 weeks of negotiations, union officials said. ... Nurses

Nurses announce support for Gray in DC mayor's race

Tim Craig, Washington Post, May 28, 2010 The District of Columbia Nurses Association, which represents 2,000 nurses and health professionals who work in the city, announced today it is supporting Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) over incumbent Adrian M. Fenty (D) in the mayor's race. "Unlike the current mayor, Vincent Gray has a track record of fairness and has demonstrated a commitment to listen to all sides in a debate about matters important to our organization," said Carole Hennessey, the organization's president. ... Nurses

Nurses on the move in DC

Sue Davis, Workers World, May 15, 2010 Nurses United of the National Capital Area, which represents 1,600 registered nurses at Washington Hospital Center, plan to picket the hospital May 11 to protest its demands to reduce earnings and change staffing levels and work rules that would negatively impact both patients and nurses. The current contract at the District of Columbia's largest civilian hospital, which expired April 24, was extended through May 10.

Nurses report differing levels of on-the-job stress

Dan Dearth, Herald-Mail, April 20, 2008 Hagerstown - Between monitoring medication, caring for multiple patients at a time and handling all of the other duties that nurses perform, some might find nursing to be a stressful profession. But not all those in the field see it that way. Melissa Wagoner, a registered nurse who has worked at Washington County Hospital for nearly 24 years, said she finds the level of stress to be surprisingly low. With a patient-to-nurse ratio of 2 to 1 in the recovery room, for example, there are plenty of nurses to provide adequate care, she said. ... Nurses

Background checks on nurses slow process

Tom LoBianco, Washington Times, August 10, 2007 Annapolis - A law that
took effect this year requiring federal criminal background checks for
Maryland nurses has created delays in licensing health care workers,
even as the state suffers a nursing shortage. The Maryland Board of
Nursing, which licenses nurses and nursing assistants, said applicants
have been experiencing delays getting fingerprints processed because of
the law, which took effect in January. But a solution may not come
until next year. "Until the law gets changed, there really isn"t that
[they] can do or we can do," said Patricia Ann Noble, executive
director of the nursing board. ... Background

Civista nurses seek new contract

Hospital’s expansion stirs concern.
Nancy Bromley McConaty, Business Gazette, February 3, 2006

Worried that the expansion of Civista Medical Center in La Plata will leave them short-handed, nurses and union representatives were still at the table this week hammering out the details of a new contract with the hospital.

Union officials want the contract to include provisions for adequate staffing, improved scheduling procedures and better health care coverage.

Contract negotiations will continue into next week, according to Michelle Healy of the 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East in Baltimore. ... Civista

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