Welcome!

News Feed Item

Baystate Franklin Medical Center Nurses Announce Plan to Conduct a One-day Unfair Labor Practice Strike Against Baystate Health on Feb. 10, says MNA/NNU

Nurses Call for Strike in Response to Baystate Health's Declaration of Impasse in Negotiations as Management Seeks to undermine Statewide Nursing Standards

GREENFIELD, Mass., Jan. 30, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The registered nurses of Baystate Franklin Medical Center (BFMC) have announced their plan to conduct a one-day unfair labor practice strike on Monday, Feb. 10, in direct response to Baystate Health's declaration of impasse last week in its negotiations for a new contract with the nurses and its plan to implement its last offer, which would eliminate a key nursing standard that serves to protect nurses from working prolonged shifts.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20060525/NETH016LOGO)

"While we have made every effort to negotiate in good faith to avoid a strike, our employer has left us no choice with their appalling decision to ignore federal labor law and impose a settlement on our nurses, a settlement that would undermine a basic nursing standard in Massachusetts hospitals," said Linda Judd, RN, a longtime nurse at the hospital, a resident of Shelburne and co-chair of the nurses' local bargaining unit of the Massachusetts Nurses Association/National Nurses United. "Beyond any specific issue in dispute, this is a strike for justice in the workplace and the need for corporate giants like Baystate to uphold the law in their dealings with their employees." 

While the membership had cast an overwhelming vote to authorize the BFMC nurses' negotiating committee to call a strike last October, the decision to issue the required 10-day notice and to set a strike date was made by the committee this week, and the membership once again endorsed the decision at open meetings held last evening. The official notice will be delivered to the hospital on Jan. 30 with the 24-hour strike set to begin on Monday, Feb. 10, beginning at 7 a.m. and ending at 7 a.m. on Feb. 11. This will be the second one-day strike by the BFMC nurses in the two years since negotiations began for a new contract in October of 2011. The first strike was held on Oct. 5, 2012.

The declaration of impasse came on the heels of two complaints the National Labor Relations Board has issued against Baystate Health for unfair labor practices. Coincidently, one of the complaints against Baystate Health was for a similar declaration of impasse in 2012 in Baystate's negotiations with the nurses who work at the Springfield-based Baystate VNA & Hospice. Ultimately, Baystate was forced to rescind its declaration of impasse and to continue negotiations with the nurses. 

The key issue preventing a settlement is Baystate Health's demand to eliminate the requirement that the employer pay overtime for consecutive hours worked beyond the end of an eight, ten or twelve hour shift. The nurses adamantly oppose this practice because they know this protection is in place in all MNA/NNU hospital contracts (which includes 70 percent of the hospitals in Massachusetts) and is a policy at most of the few non-union hospitals as well.

"The nurses have been clear – we want to reduce and eliminate overtime as a staffing tool. By contrast, Baystate simply wants to eliminate overtime pay, which removes the one disincentive from using overtime as a staffing tool," said Donna Stern, RN, a nurse at BFMC and co-chair of the nurses' local bargaining unit.

The nurses point out that this is not fundamentally an economic issue. Baystate said two years ago that the total daily overtime cost at BFMC for the RNs was $180,000 on an annual basis. Since then Baystate has revised that figure because it included weekly overtime as well. That figure has now dropped to approximately $60,000 annually. To put that figure in context, the total annual overtime costs for all 200 BFMC RNs is roughly equal to one week of Baystate Health CEO Mark Tolosky's pay and benefits.

Last summer, the NLRB issued complaints against Baystate for its refusal to provide information the nurses needed to evaluate the management's proposals at the table, as well as for management's efforts to prevent nurses from their lawful right to discuss union matters at work. In fact, Baystate is utilizing attorneys from Jackson Lewis, a high priced law firm known for its aggressive anti-union tactics, generating enormous legal fees that could be used to improve care for patients at the hospital. 

"It is outrageous that management would rather spend its resources to break the law instead of negotiating in good faith, as we are trying to do, to reach a settlement," said Stern. "We have even offered to put the outstanding issues before an independent arbitrator to reach a decision, yet Baystate has refused that offer and is now trying to unlawfully implement a set of their proposals."

In response to the hospital's action, the nurses have filed yet another set of unfair labor practice charges against the hospital with the NLRB, and are appealing to local and state officials for help in ending this conflict, 

There has been an outpouring of support for nurses' collective bargaining rights over the last year. At the Democratic State Convention held in Springfield last summer, the convention delegates unanimously passed a resolution calling on Baystate to conduct good faith negotiations with the MNA/NNU nurses and come to a fair agreement. The Greenfield City Council passed a similar resolution last year. Thousands of Franklin County residents have signed a petition of support for the Baystate Franklin Medical Center nurses and delegations of community supporters and elected officials have called on Baystate to avoid further conflict and settle a fair contract with the nurses at BFMC.

"The nurses appreciate the deep and broad community and political support that has been shown across Franklin County," Stern added, "and we ask all Franklin County residents to call on Baystate to work with the nurses to avoid a needless strike."

Founded in 1903, the Massachusetts Nurses Association/National Nurses United is the largest professional health care organization and the largest union of registered nurses in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Its 23,000 members advance the nursing profession by fostering high standards of nursing practice, promoting the economic and general welfare of nurses in the workplace, projecting a positive and realistic view of nursing, and by lobbying the Legislature and regulatory agencies on health care issues affecting nurses and the public. The MNA is a founding member of National Nurses United, the largest national nurses union in the United States with more than 170,000 members from coast to coast.

SOURCE Massachusetts Nurses Association/National Nurses United

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, James Henry, Co-CEO/CTO of Calgary Scientific Inc., introduced you to the challenges, solutions and benefits of training AI systems to solve visual problems with an emphasis on improving AIs with continuous training in the field. He explored applications in several industries and discussed technologies that allow the deployment of advanced visualization solutions to the cloud.
We all know that end users experience the Internet primarily with mobile devices. From an app development perspective, we know that successfully responding to the needs of mobile customers depends on rapid DevOps – failing fast, in short, until the right solution evolves in your customers' relationship to your business. Whether you’re decomposing an SOA monolith, or developing a new application cloud natively, it’s not a question of using microservices – not doing so will be a path to eventual b...
One of the biggest challenges with adopting a DevOps mentality is: new applications are easily adapted to cloud-native, microservice-based, or containerized architectures - they can be built for them - but old applications need complex refactoring. On the other hand, these new technologies can require relearning or adapting new, oftentimes more complex, methodologies and tools to be ready for production. In his general session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Brown, Solutions Marketi...
At the keynote this morning we spoke about the value proposition of Nutanix, of having a DevOps culture and a mindset, and the business outcomes of achieving agility and scale, which everybody here is trying to accomplish," noted Mark Lavi, DevOps Solution Architect at Nutanix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
I think DevOps is now a rambunctious teenager - it's starting to get a mind of its own, wanting to get its own things but it still needs some adult supervision," explained Thomas Hooker, VP of marketing at CollabNet, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Enterprises are moving to the cloud faster than most of us in security expected. CIOs are going from 0 to 100 in cloud adoption and leaving security teams in the dust. Once cloud is part of an enterprise stack, it’s unclear who has responsibility for the protection of applications, services, and data. When cloud breaches occur, whether active compromise or a publicly accessible database, the blame must fall on both service providers and users. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben Johnson, C...
In this presentation, you will learn first hand what works and what doesn't while architecting and deploying OpenStack. Some of the topics will include:- best practices for creating repeatable deployments of OpenStack- multi-site considerations- how to customize OpenStack to integrate with your existing systems and security best practices.
"MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the conn...
Major trends and emerging technologies – from virtual reality and IoT, to Big Data and algorithms – are helping organizations innovate in the digital era. However, to create real business value, IT must think beyond the ‘what’ of digital transformation to the ‘how’ to harness emerging trends, innovation and disruption. Architecture is the key that underpins and ties all these efforts together. In the digital age, it’s important to invest in architecture, extend the enterprise footprint to the cl...
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
"We work around really protecting the confidentiality of information, and by doing so we've developed implementations of encryption through a patented process that is known as superencipherment," explained Richard Blech, CEO of Secure Channels Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
"We were founded in 2003 and the way we were founded was about good backup and good disaster recovery for our clients, and for the last 20 years we've been pretty consistent with that," noted Marc Malafronte, Territory Manager at StorageCraft, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Effectively SMBs and government programs must address compounded regulatory compliance requirements. The most recent are Controlled Unclassified Information and the EU's GDPR have Board Level implications. Managing sensitive data protection will likely result in acquisition criteria, demonstration requests and new requirements. Developers, as part of the pre-planning process and the associated supply chain, could benefit from updating their code libraries and design by incorporating changes. In...