May 4, 2011
By Daniel Ulloa
A failure by the New York State Nurses Association to come to an agreement with their staff union, an affiliate of the United Steel Workers could result in a strike as early as next week, after mediation efforts failed.
In March 2010, NYSNA management sent out a notice cutting rollover vacation hours, modifying the grievance process, and cutting reimbursement rates and comp time for staff.
Since August 2010, the USW and NYSNA have been negotiating over salaries, working conditions, and grievance procedures, but have yet to reach an agreement. NYSNA has not responded to proposals offered by the union according to Tom Jennings, co chair of the NYSNA staff unit.
“They’re dragging their heals on this,” Jennings told LaborPress. “We want to get on with this so we can continue to service the members.”
“Our first priority is to serve our members and promote professionalism,” said Deb Elliot, deputy executive director of NYSNA. “We’re continuing to bargain in good faith and will continue to do so. Hopefully, we’ll come to an agreement. This is their first contract.”
Picketing outside NYSNA’s offices is scheduled to begin Monday.
NYSNA, the oldest and largest union for registered nurses in New York State, has 36,000 members.