Twin Cities nurses moving closer to second walkout

With fresh negotiations going nowhere, more than 12,000 nurses and their union could begin a second, indefinite strike against 14 Twin Cities hospitals immediately after the Fourth of July weekend. Full Story
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fustrated RN

Minneapolis, MN

#3 Jun 25, 2010
I have worked in many areas across the country and this is by far the easiest job I have ever had. The staffing ratios in my particular unit are fantastic and the pay is unbelievable. Did you know a 2 yr RN can start at $28.00 an hour? That's craziness. I just would like to say that not all nurses agree with the political agenda of the MNA. I feel the MNA has become a bully and is trying to gain national recognition and has forgot to ask us nurses what we really want or need. I am happy to have a job in a great place and wish that the local community would stop and realize that not all nurse feel so strongly as MNA feels.

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Joe Merlot

Saint Paul, MN

#5 Jun 25, 2010
OK folks, this is OUR Health Care system and THEIR demands are ONE of the reasons that costs continue to rise.

Stand tough hospitals. You are not asking anything of them is being asked of others in this economy. Thank you for attempting to maintain costs.

It's obvious that there will be no negotiation with the union as they have national labor interests in mind vs maintaining costs and services for consumers/patients. If you give in, you will be one more domino in the chain that represents another significant cost shift to consumers which will degrade health care for all. Replace them if you have to. I know the cost of temporary labor will be high while the unfair labor practices complaints play out, but in the end they'll be dismissed for the delay tactic they are and you'll have no problems rehiring nurses under the terms that you are now offering.

It's time to start breaking the unions before they break us and management is the only entity that has the means to break them.

Stand tall.
Joe Merlot

Saint Paul, MN

#6 Jun 25, 2010
fustrated RN wrote:
I have worked in many areas across the country and this is by far the easiest job I have ever had. The staffing ratios in my particular unit are fantastic and the pay is unbelievable. Did you know a 2 yr RN can start at $28.00 an hour? That's craziness. I just would like to say that not all nurses agree with the political agenda of the MNA. I feel the MNA has become a bully and is trying to gain national recognition and has forgot to ask us nurses what we really want or need. I am happy to have a job in a great place and wish that the local community would stop and realize that not all nurse feel so strongly as MNA feels.
Good for you and speaking for the community, Thank you. I would strongly encourage you to break ranks if there is a strike and cross the line. Keep your job and tell the union and it's crazier members to get bent.
Amy

Hartford, CT

#7 Jun 25, 2010
Fire them all. The rest of the country goes without raises, why do they think they are more deserving?
Are you kidding

Saint Paul, MN

#8 Jun 25, 2010
I have been in 4 unions over the years and this
is the textbook example of the problems they
have. Collective bargaining of wages and
benefits can be a very effective and constructive
thing for workers in any field; problem is, it
never ends there. Once again, the union wants
to manage the business. They dictate staffing,
work schedules, how many paying clients the
business can schedule..........
need I go on? They genuinely believe that
because they formed a "union" they now are
equal partners with the business and have an
equal say in running the business. That is where
management is going to draw the line each and
every time and then the unions think that if
they back down they lose face with their members.
In reality, the members just want to work there
for a fair wage and can see both sides. This
group is no different.

Strike if you want to boys and girls, but don't
expect a whole lot of support. If you believe in
what you are doing then do it; if not, go to work
strike or no strike. Time to poop or get off
the pot.

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“HHhhhoooowwwlll”

Since: Feb 08

Craigville

#9 Jun 25, 2010
They picked the wrong fight at the wrong time.
If the nurses were to sway public opinion in their favor during the good times, that's one thing, but during these economic troubled times?
They come off as greedy, self centered workers who will make it 'hurt' for anyone who stands in their way.
If there are capable replacements available, they are writing their own death sentence.
Matt B

Canada

#10 Jun 25, 2010
Time for a bulk order of pink slips!

Fire these nurses and break these unions!!!

I trust the hospitals more than the unions on this matter. I read the union proposal - what a bunch of greedy bums!

Currently getting:
$80,000 wages +$10,000 free health care +$$$$$ in free pension + pay raises = Unfair Treatment? WTF!!!!

What is wrong with nurses? Are you crazy?

Fire them all!!!
U2Care

Minneapolis, MN

#12 Jun 25, 2010
Hey MNA, have you read the top headline here? "A loss of benefits looms, anxiety grows for jobless Minnesotans." You talk about pensions, raises, low need days, but people without jobs are stressed on making ends meet. One nurse was interviewed after voting on Monday that she is in the middle of building a new home. Think about how many fellow employees are trying to save their home. RNs receive bonuses for working a weekend or holiday shifts and for working their birthday. Your strike affects patients and other workers in the hospital.
Unionschmoonion

Grantsburg, WI

#13 Jun 25, 2010
MNA's new slogan: "MNA - Helping replacement nurses find gainful employment."
Amy T

Saint Paul, MN

#14 Jun 25, 2010
I've tried to tell nurses that I know how that the MNA is in the wrong and has been since the start. It has been met with a lot of anger and defensiveness to the point where we just don't speak of it anymore. I don't think as individuals nurses are greedy or lazy, but I do think they are being misled or just plain lied to by the union. The MNA is destroying the reputation of every nurse in the cities. There is no good way to justify why a nurse should be paid to sit around when the census on the floor is low. The hospital needs to be able to adjust staffing levels to meet need. I am glad the Pioneer Press has finally spelled it out plain as day for all the world to see. I hope that reading that article will help some RNs out there finally agree that the demands being made on their behalf are outrageous and unfair. The nurses who think the MNA is right will still strike and we are better off without them.
no sympathy

Saint Paul, MN

#15 Jun 25, 2010
In spite of the fact that I am in year #2 of what will most likely be a 5 year wage freeze, I do not complain and I do not walk out. Instead, I show up for work every day, give it my all, and am grateful for the job that I have. Shame on you, nurses. I used to have great respect for your profession, but your whining changed all that. If you truly cared about your patients, you would go to work. The general public is not naive enough to believe that you are striking for safe patient care. It is all about money. Did you really think this job would be glorious and easy?!?! You signed up for it...now suck it up and deal with it. I wonder if you will be shouting "Go home scabs" in weeks 8, 9, 10 of the strike...
Really

Minneapolis, MN

#17 Jun 25, 2010
if the reporter is in a union this must be disclosed so the reader can discount all pro unions positions
freedom of choice

Saint Paul, MN

#18 Jun 25, 2010
Let them walk. While I don't agree with the hospitals pushing to share nurses between different areas of care, such as shifting a nurse from parinatal to fill in at the ER, the nurse's pay and benefit demands are much more severe and outrageous, especially considering the economy we are in. There are plenty of other people who can fill their shoes, such as nurses wanting to pick up more hours or become full-time employees, and I'd rather have someone watching over me that just cares about being there rather than someone that has their pocketbook in mind first and foremost.
PON

Minneapolis, MN

#19 Jun 25, 2010
All of you are uneducated about the circumstances that are occurring! 1. Mr. DPH... you used the wrong form of "two" in your response.... I probably learned the correct form when I was graduating from a 4 year private MN college. I will use those same skills that I learned at that 4 year college as well as the last 5 years of experience when you show up at the hospital needing my help... 2. I'm 5'8 and weigh 128 pounds (oh and I just had twins) so all the fat comments are also uneducated and simply not true. 3. We are fighting for you whether you want to believe it or not. The nurses are NOT the reason that this health care system is falling apart and in fact are the glue that holds the disfunction together! The CEOs are making boat loads of money and bonuses... they are spending your tax dollars not on health care but instead on fancy lawyers, spokespeople, lunches, scab nurses (when they already have skilled nurses that know the systems), and large buildings. There are many issues at hand here... more then I can go into on this blog. I encourage you to go to the MNA website as well as the Twin Cities hospital website, do some research, talk to real nurses and then make an informed educated decision. Think about it from a different perspective... if it were your wife in labor, your 2 pound infant, your grandmother with cancer, your husband with a heart attack, your son in a car crash.. who do you want caring for them... the current nurses (who know the system, the MDs, where supplies are, how to use the computers, IV pumps and monitors) or would you prefer the Scab nurse (that is only here to make $5600 a week, don't know the system, don't have MN licenses, don't know how to work the equipment and has worked 5 12 hour shifts this week)? Your decision!
nope

Palo Alto, CA

#20 Jun 25, 2010
"The hospitals point out that the average full-time nurse makes $78,000 before bonuses. The union points out that most nurses are part-timers and that the average salary is closer to $62,000. "

Darn, I have to work full time to make $68,000. I wonder if it's too late to go to nursing school so I can work part time...

The Union is clueless about what to cite that might get their members some support. That stat is not it!
Finance

Saint Paul, MN

#22 Jun 25, 2010
The hospitals have no ability to accept the nurse's union's demands and still exist 5-10 years down the road.

One estimate had it that caving to their demands would cost one of these organizations $60 million dollars annually - this is at a time that tens of millions in state funding are being lost and the economy is really hurting revenues.

I wonder how they will like it when their non-union coworkers start getting laid off because of the millions upon millions these pay raise demands are costing?
Jerry

Saint Paul, MN

#23 Jun 25, 2010
fustrated RN wrote:
I have worked in many areas across the country and this is by far the easiest job I have ever had. The staffing ratios in my particular unit are fantastic and the pay is unbelievable. Did you know a 2 yr RN can start at $28.00 an hour? That's craziness. I just would like to say that not all nurses agree with the political agenda of the MNA. I feel the MNA has become a bully and is trying to gain national recognition and has forgot to ask us nurses what we really want or need. I am happy to have a job in a great place and wish that the local community would stop and realize that not all nurse feel so strongly as MNA feels.
The MNA is taking orders from the national union. They have never intended nor attempted to negotiate. They will not budge on any of their proposals.

It's too bad the nurses have to deal with this, but only they could vote to de-unionize
east sider

Saint Paul, MN

#24 Jun 25, 2010
PON wrote:
All of you are uneducated about the circumstances that are occurring! 1. Mr. DPH... you used the wrong form of "two" in your response.... I probably learned the correct form when I was graduating from a 4 year private MN college. I will use those same skills that I learned at that 4 year college as well as the last 5 years of experience when you show up at the hospital needing my help... 2. I'm 5'8 and weigh 128 pounds (oh and I just had twins) so all the fat comments are also uneducated and simply not true. 3. We are fighting for you whether you want to believe it or not. The nurses are NOT the reason that this health care system is falling apart and in fact are the glue that holds the disfunction together! The CEOs are making boat loads of money and bonuses... they are spending your tax dollars not on health care but instead on fancy lawyers, spokespeople, lunches, scab nurses (when they already have skilled nurses that know the systems), and large buildings. There are many issues at hand here... more then I can go into on this blog. I encourage you to go to the MNA website as well as the Twin Cities hospital website, do some research, talk to real nurses and then make an informed educated decision. Think about it from a different perspective... if it were your wife in labor, your 2 pound infant, your grandmother with cancer, your husband with a heart attack, your son in a car crash.. who do you want caring for them... the current nurses (who know the system, the MDs, where supplies are, how to use the computers, IV pumps and monitors) or would you prefer the Scab nurse (that is only here to make $5600 a week, don't know the system, don't have MN licenses, don't know how to work the equipment and has worked 5 12 hour shifts this week)? Your decision!
Regarding your points 1 & 2 - pay no attention to the Asian carp. It's composing the most hateful, incindiary comments it can imagine in every discussion that it jumps into. While I don't like what the union is doing, personal attacks have absolutely no place in a discussion of the issues at hand.
Mayor McCheese

Saint Paul, MN

#25 Jun 25, 2010
nope wrote:
"The hospitals point out that the average full-time nurse makes $78,000 before bonuses. The union points out that most nurses are part-timers and that the average salary is closer to $62,000. "
Darn, I have to work full time to make $68,000. I wonder if it's too late to go to nursing school so I can work part time...
The Union is clueless about what to cite that might get their members some support. That stat is not it!
Exactly!

Do they expect sympathy because they make $60,000 a year working part time!?
Amy T

Saint Paul, MN

#26 Jun 25, 2010
freedom of choice wrote:
Let them walk. While I don't agree with the hospitals pushing to share nurses between different areas of care, such as shifting a nurse from parinatal to fill in at the ER, the nurse's pay and benefit demands are much more severe and outrageous, especially considering the economy we are in. There are plenty of other people who can fill their shoes, such as nurses wanting to pick up more hours or become full-time employees, and I'd rather have someone watching over me that just cares about being there rather than someone that has their pocketbook in mind first and foremost.
For all hospitals involved, the language is clearly written that a nurse will be floated only to a comparable unit similar to the one she is accustomed to working on. A cardiac nurse then would not be floated to labor and delivery, but possibly to the SICU. It is written in the proposals each hospital has submitted to the MNA. I found it by googling Twin Cities Hospitals.

If a nurse is not competent enough to adapt to a similar floor once and a while, I would argue she is not competent period. It is the provider who spent years and training to care for one certain aspect of the human condition. The nursing staff went to school for a couple of years to understand basic biology and physiology, enabling them to have a basic understanding of the medications they are giving and the conditions they are dealing with. There are enough similarities in nursing care that a good nurse is certainly able to adapt now and again to a new floor.

Nurses switch units or specialties all the time. Your nurse who is currently taking care of you in the bone marrow transplant unit, may well have just come from the PICU or a cancer respite home.(And yes, a nurse I know well has done just that, and he is among the most intelligent of nurses you will ever encounter!)

The point is that if a physician decided to switch from being a transplant surgeon to a radiologist, that provider would need to be fully re-trained, because that individual has spent around 15 years becoming more and more focused on their specialty. For the reasons I pointed out above, a nurse is not nor should be that specialized, as it is not their role in the health care team - nor has it ever been.

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