May 17, 2017
By WNYLaborToday.com Editor-Publisher Tom Campbell
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Buffalo, NY – More than 1,400 Members of Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1168 packed the Downtown Buffalo Convention Center earlier this month (May 5th) to take part in a 35-year celebration of a Union that represents a variety of Health Care Workers across Western New York.
“It was ‘quite an event.’ “(Local 1168 President) Cori Gambini gave a ‘great’ speech and we showed a twenty-minute historical video of our Union,” Local 1168 Executive Vice President Robert Andruszko told WNYLaborToday.com. “Even though (Union Members) ‘are under fire, it’s not all gloom and doom.’ So this was an ‘opportune time’ to celebrate. ‘We all left the celebration with our spirits lifted.’”
The CWA Local represents more than 4,500 Members who are employed at many Health Care Institutions across the region, including Sisters of Charity Hospital and the St. Joseph Campus, Kaleida Health System’s Buffalo General Medical Campus and GVI, DeGraff Memorial Hospital, Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, the Highpoint Long Term Care Facility, the Flint Road Regional Laboratory, Absolut Care of Gasport, Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York, Family Pharmaceutical Services LLC, and the Millard Fillmore Surgery Center LLC.
The inception of CWA Local 1168 – which was initially known as Local Nurses United – began in the early 80s when Buffalo General Hospital (BGH) Nurses organized to join a Union. Nurses United/CWA Local 1168 was born and immediately engaged in a Strike in order to obtain a fair contract. The Nurses prevailed and in the end it was a big win for the Unionized Health Care Workers at BGH and ultimately lead to the growth of the Union that is now more than three decades old.