The 5,800 nurses who care for you and your family at U of M Hospital may now need your support. They’re negotiating with a management that’s refused to bargain in good faith about what they care about most: their patients.
By a 94% margin nurses voted in September to authorize a three-day work stoppage if necessary, to protest the University’s unfair labor practices. Due to those continuous unfair labor practices the union has been unable to discuss important issues.
“Our foremost issue is staffing levels—how many patients we care for at one time,” said 34-year nurse and steward Anne Jackson, who chaired a solidarity meeting of about 100 supporters from the community and other unions on September 27. “As soon as you get more than four patients, bad things start to happen.”
The U of M Professional Nurse Council wants staffing limits written into their contract, which Jackson said management has refused to do. Nurses are also resisting take-aways to their pensions and they oppose Victors Care, an elitist program that allows the rich to purchase greater access to care.
The nurses held a march of 2,000, with community and union allies, on July 14. They gathered outside the Regents meeting September 20, where several Regents spoke up to say they supported the nurses.
By law the nurses union must give 10 days’ notice of a work stoppage, which means it could happen as early as the second week of October if management continues with its unfair labor practices.
Stand by to rally with the nurses on the first day of their work stoppage, and come out to their picket lines all three days!