Last night the Minnesota Nurses Association authorized an indefinite strike at 14 metro area hospitals.  We’ve not been excited about this prospect and feel that both sides have been more focused on control and power than actual negotiations.  It seems odd that anyone would relish the idea of a strike, but many floor nurses have been excited. The union says that 84% of members approved the strike action, but hasn’t actually released the number of nurses who voted.  In May 3/4 or approximately 8,000 of the 12,000+ nurses voted, with 90% approving the one day strike.

The MNA has finally posted a side-by-side comparison of the negotiating points as of June 15.  Nothing has changed since then, except the vote to authorize a strike and the fact the MNA rejected the hospital’s condition of no strike until after July 31 to restart negotiations.

Below is the comparison of the MNA and Fairview’s negotiating points (assuming the MNA isn’t distorting the hospitals).  A list of the hospital’s proposal’s can be found here.

MNA Proprosal, as posted on June 22 Fairview Proposal
MNA’s Current Proposal
1. Staffing Ratios ? Acuity: MNA negotiating teams have asked hospitals to address “Staffing” issues. The proposal that was made on Staffing and Acuity was supposed to be a starting place not the place where we ended up.
2. Educational Development: MNA proposes that all education is scheduled quarterly in 4 or 8 hour blocks, this does not cost the employer anything.
3. Emergency Preparedness for Disaster and Catastrophic Events: This is to prepare for the
future, there is no cost to this proposal.
4. Infectious Diseases: This is a proposal to prepare for the future, proper equipment and
preparation for future outbreaks like H1N1
5. Low Need Days and Layoff: MNA proposes seniority should be honored fully and completely in any layoff
6. Technology: MNA proposes that technology does not replace clinical judgment.
7. Successors and Assigns: This proposal ensures that the contract reached between the two
parties is a condition of sale in the event of a sale, merger, joint venture, consolidation and
reorganization.
8. Bargaining Unit Protection/Kentucky River: Charge nurses have always been a part of our union and this proposal ensures us that the employer cannot challenge their standing within it.
9. Bargaining Unit Protection: MNA proposes the employer will not require a nurse to choose between her or his contract and their clinical specialty.
10. Incorporation of Interim Agreements: MNA proposes all understandings reached between the two parties are consistent with the contract.
11. Neutrality: Organizing and Election Procedures. MNA proposal provides a mechanism where “not yet union” Registered Nurses may form a union without interference or coercion from their employer
12. Wages: The union has modified our proposal but we are confident that wages are not the sticking point.
13.Insurance Benefits: We have proposed 95% employer paid health insurance.
What MNA Has Dropped: Our Negotiating Team Moved for the Purposes of Bargaining:
Modified Staffing Proposal
Reduced Wage Proposal for each year but we are confident that wages are not the sticking point.
Modified the Health Insurance Proposal
Fairview Southdale Hospital and University of Minnesota Medical Center – Riverside Campus Hospitals Proposal May 13, 2010 Note: Items crossed out represented proposals the Fairview bargaining has dropped during negotiations. They are not part of our current offer. 1

TIME-OFF
1. Section 4 L – Straight Night Time-Off Bonus:

Replace Section 4 L with the following so as to eliminate the time-off option for straight night time-off bonus:
In addition to the above, a full-time nurse working a permanent night shift for at least six (6) months shall receive an additional twenty (20) hours of regular pay at the end of each six (6) month period. Part-time nurses working a permanent night shift for at least six (6) months shall receive a bonus payment that is prorated from the above number of hours. This provision also applies to nurses working permanent night alternative weekend schedules.
2. Section 9 B – Vacation Conversion to Pay:

Delete this section.
3. Section 10 E Sick Leave Payout on Retirement:

Delete this section.

7. Section 14 D – Mandatory Low-Need Days:

Replace the language in Section 14 D so that mandatory low need days will be rotated among all regularly scheduled nursing staff on a calendar year basis, and the low need notice will be two hours for all shifts (including holidays) as follows:
D. Mandatory Low-Need Days:
If additional reductions are indicated, low-need days shall be taken by the least senior regularly-scheduled nurse scheduled for the particular unit and shift where the reduction is necessary. The work shift of a nurse will not be involuntarily cancelled after the start of the shift.
No regularly scheduled nurse shall be required by the Hospital to take more than six (6) low need days per calendar year (48 hours). Starting first with the least senior nurse on the seniority list who is scheduled to work on the unit and shift where the low need will take place, that nurse will be advised he/she is not needed for that shift or a portion thereof. On the next occasion where a reduction is needed, the Hospital will advise the next least senior nurse scheduled on the unit and shift in question and he/she will be advised he/she is not needed. This practice will continue through the seniority list with the intent that all nurses share as equally as possible in low need days.
A nurse to be assigned a low-need day pursuant to this Part D shall be given a minimum of two (2) hours advance notice before the beginning of any shift which is being cancelled.
Casual part-time or temporary nurses shall not be assigned to work on units for which the nurse receiving low-need days is oriented or otherwise qualified. Nurses having hours reduced shall be given first opportunity for subsequent additional work hours that may become available to replace work hours lost.

STAFFING and SCHEDULING
13. Section 6 B – Part-Time Holidays

Modify the third paragraph of Section 6 B as indicated below and delete the fourth paragraph of Section 6 B and to ensure there is adequate staffing on holidays:
Section 6 B Part-Time Holidays:
A nurse who has an authorized hours appointment of 64-79 hours and either twenty-five (25) calendar years of service or 35,000 hours of seniority will not be required to work holidays provided it does not have the effect of depriving patients of needed nursing services.

17. Section 22 C – Unit Grid Reviews

Delete the last paragraph in Section 22 C.

BENEFITS

19. Sections 6 C, 6 C 3, 29 A 2, 29 D and 29 F:

Modify these Sections as indicated below so that effective January 1, 2011 benefit eligibility is determined by being authorized to work forty (40) hours or more per two week payroll period.
Section 6 C – Part-Time Increments, Vacation and Sick and 6 C 3 Part-time Sick Leave:
Replace the first sentence of Section 6 C with the sentence below and delete the first sentence in Section 6 C 3:
Effective January 1, 2011, nurses authorized forty (40) hours or more per two (2) week payroll period shall be eligible for the benefits below:
Section 29 A 2 – Health and Hospitalization Insurance:
Replace the first sentence of Section 29 A 2 with the following:
Effective January 1, 2011, nurses authorized forty (40) hours or more per two (2) week payroll period shall be eligible for the same hospitalization insurance benefits as full-time nurses.
Sec. 29 D – Life Insurance:
Replace the first sentence of Section 29 D with the following:
Effective January 1, 2011, the Hospital shall provide and pay the full cost of a group term life insurance program for full-time nurses and regular part-time nurses authorized forty (40) hours or more per two (2) week payroll period.
Sec. 29 F – Dental Insurance:
Replace the first sentence of Section 29 A 2 with the following:
Effective January 1, 2011, the Hospital shall provide and pay the full cost of a group term dental insurance program for full-time nurses and regular part-time nurses authorized forty (40) hours or more per two (2) week payroll period.

20. Section 29 A – Health and Hospitalization Insurance

Replace the first paragraph of Section 29 A with the following and update any other areas of the contract as needed so as to transition all nurses to the non-contract MedChoice health insurance plan:
Effective January 1, 2011, nurses authorized to work forty (40) hours per two (2) week payroll period or more shall be eligible to participate in the same health insurance plan as the non-contract employees as the plan may exist and may be amended from time to time.
21. Section 29 A 2, 29 A 4 and 29 A 5 d – Health Insurance:

Delete the last sentence in Section 29 A 2 and delete Sections 29 A 4 and 29 A 5 d in their entirety..

23. Section 29 C – Long-Term Disability

For clarification purposes only, replace the first sentence of the first paragraph of Section 29 C with the following:
The Hospital shall provide and pay the full cost of a long–term disability insurance program for full-time nurses and part-time nurses authorized forty eight (48) hours or more per two (2) week payroll period.

OTHER SECTIONS

27. Section 4 B – Longevity Bonus:

Delete Section 4 B.
30. Appendix C – Recognized Certification Programs

Update the list of certifications as needed.

Pension
Fairview Southdale Hospital and University of Minnesota Medical Center – Riverside Campus adopts the pension proposal as proposed by the Hospitals in a letter to Mr. James Bialke dated May 3, 2010 – see attached.
Wages
First year – No across-the-board increase. Step increases to continue.
Second year – Effective with the pay period commencing closest to June 1, 2011, there shall be a one percent (1%) across-the-board increase to the basic minimum salaries indicated in the Staff Nurse Salary Charts. Step increases to continue.
Third year – Effective with the pay period commencing closest to June 1, 2012, there shall be a two percent (2%) across-the-board increase to the basic minimum salaries indicated in the Staff Nurse Salary Charts. Step increases to continue.
Duration and Renewal
Except as set forth above, the new contract shall be effective from June 1, 2010 or the date this contract proposal is ratified by the Union, whichever is later, and shall run through May 31, 2013.

MODIFICATIONS TO APPENDIX C (pg.88) – RECOGNIZED CERTIFICATION PROGRAMS
CLARIFICATIONS:
CCRN Certification for Adult, Pediatric and Neonatal Critical Care Nurses (was titled American Association of Critical Care Nurses)
CMC Cardiovascular Medical Certification
CSC Cardiovascular Surgical Certification
CCNS Clinical Nurse Specialist Certification
ADDITIONS:
PCCN Progressive Care Certified Nurse
ACNPC Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Certification

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