Posted June 27, 2010 by drichmn in Strike. Tagged: MN Nurses, Nursing Strike. 77 Comments
Please share your thoughts, feelings, observations as we countdown toward a strike.
This topic is now read-only.
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 1:47 am
This was posted this evening on the MNA FB page:
“Michael J Sanchez Union Busting 101–‘A company gains from any divisions or animosity created among employees, for the union can be blamed for driving ‘a wedge of hate into a once unified work force.’ ”
So who is that has driven a wedge between the nurses and management? As was stated on here before, Just a few months ago, my entire unit was pretty satisfied with their jobs and the work we do. Suddenly everyone hates their job and their employer and our management. So it is no wonder I blame the union for driving this wedge of hate, and for sparking animosity amongst my coworkers. We were once a unified workforce, until the MNA and the NNU began their campaign of dissatisfaction and hate. This is all just so very sad.
Posted by L&D RN"SCAB" on June 27, 2010 at 5:15 am
Hi, keep in mind that anyone can read your posts,even us ‘scabs” Why do you feel the need to wear a green dot? I hope that ALL the RNs working will support each other. I have worked 2 strikes before. It is such a hard decision. Yes the money is good, but it takes a lot of courage to leave one’s family and be willing to work in a new environment. A strike is harder than the usual travel assignment because we do not have as much support staff. However I assure you that 99% of the replacement nurses I have worked with are extremely competent and compassionate. We get along very well with your staff and want to provide the best care possible. We realize our(your) patients are anxious,as well as your staff. We do our best to reasssure you all. Nurses who are willing to work a strike are smart nurses. We wouldn’t put our licenses on the line for a one time job. We know we can do the job well,we are flexible and adapt to new things quickly. Fortunately we have usually worked at many different hospitals across the country and at some point have used almost every type of computer charting and equipment there is.Please, rest assured,you will be working with GREAT nurses! Of course there may be a few that aren’t so great-as in any hospital. Most will be wonderful!!!! Good luck to you all. I have not decided yet if I am coming.My kids are on summer break and we have many camping trips planned. I hate to miss out on activities with my kids. Keep me posted on how the labor and delivery units are going! I have 20 years experience. xox
Posted by anotherview on June 27, 2010 at 5:28 am
The replacement nurses were a godsend in the one day strike. Yes, some were not so competent but the majority were fabulous – just like our own workforce. Believe me, we have some very poor nurses but because of the union, we are unable to deal appropriately with their incompetency – they are protected. We will welcome all who wish to work.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 6:51 am
The green dot is so that those of us who have been posting on or reading and supportive of this blog can identify each other.
Posted by anurse20 on June 27, 2010 at 8:00 am
We want any replacement nurses that have been on this blog to wear a green dot as well. That way we will know who you are. This is a positive thing as we have had other replacement nurses on here as well. Those of us crossing want to help you, replacement nurses are welcome in this group.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 8:24 am
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 5:00 pm
Ditto!!! We will welcome you all with open arms, and will proudly work along side you!!!
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 5:01 pm
and please–don’t call yourselves “scabs”…we don’t!! 🙂
Posted by integritynurse on June 27, 2010 at 4:49 pm
Thank you! And I could never call any nurse a “scab”. We are so glad you are coming and we will work side by side with you and assist in any way possible to make you feel welcome and appreciated. Thanks for all that you do!
Posted by Connie1960 on June 27, 2010 at 8:46 am
Did you see all the posts from Michael J. Sanchez? It seems he fills in the voids when no one else is posting. Stirring the pot. His FB info lists his current city Daly City, CA. His contact info is listed as: http://www.afge.org
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 8:54 am
AFGE is affiliated with AFL-CIO. I have read on another AFL-CIO affiliated site that they see nurses as an avenue to revitalize the union movement because of nurses high regard in the community. I think they blew it and are now hurting nurses reputation because of their tactics. In my opinion, they do not understand how to represent professional nurses, the nursing profession, or issues important to nurses.
Posted by nostrikefornurses on June 27, 2010 at 3:53 pm
Agreed…..this is causing so much tension to a workplace that thought we had it pretty good until we were told we do not.
Posted by concerned on June 27, 2010 at 8:35 pm
I can see where some people think they are understaffed- some units are some arent….. how do you think we can help those who are understaffed but don’t want to strike?
Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2010 at 11:44 pm
I agree that some units are busier than others, as well as the fact that one night can be very different from the last. I don’t agree with the idea that we can expect a set staff/patient ratio and make it concrete. Our grids are to guide us, but sometimes we need more, and sometimes less. It’s amazing what we can do when we work together, right? Last time I worked, I had 4 patients and another nurse was set to admit. She had 3 patients. But when the time came, she couldn’t possibly juggle it, and I could so I volunteered. If we act like professional adults, and if the hospitals can respect the fact that when we say we need help we MEAN IT, then maybe we can work this out in a less demanding, more flexible way? Making such unreasonable demands, and the way the hospitals are not budging… who is that helping? We love our jobs and need to fight for what we believe in. I dont’ want to strike, I just want to feel safe and like the hospital appreciates how hard I work. And what’s with the comment by the hospital spokesperson last week, that night shift doesn’t have a lot of contact with the patients? What about the person dying, or the one with bedsores from the nursing home that requires every 2 hour turning, or the person with EKG changes and severe chest pain? The patients trying to climb out of bed, or the patient that pulled their IV and foley out while trying to go to the bathroom? We do our best, but sometimes it’s just too much. All I want is to know that if we really can’t handle it on a given shift, we won’t be told that there’s nothing they can do.
The scary part is that I was told that i have to strike, because the last time there was a strike, all nurses who crossed the picket lines were gone within a year, either due to nurse harassment, or false accusations ending in termination. So what choice do we have?
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 11:57 pm
there seems to be much more support for nurses who would choose to cross the picket line than MNA is leading you to believe. You always have a choice. Don’t let anybody take that away from you. There are much stronger policies against harassment in the workplace now then there was 26 years ago. Even JCAHO is focusing on intimidation and other disruptive behaviors. Be wary of anybody who tries to manipulate you with fear.
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 6:20 pm
In the last few weeks I have seen the MNA agenda turn great people I have worked with for decades into strangers. It is sad that any one person can be persueded to turn their backs on their own peers over something that really in the long run change nothing.
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 3:16 am
Hi all– I just came across this tonight–it is the press release from the ANA in regards to the MNA split from the ANA…I thought it was very interesting. Even though we pay union dues of roughly $600.00 per year, we were given NO choice in this.
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 3:18 am
pay close attention to the second paragraph!!!
Posted by quiltmom on June 27, 2010 at 3:52 am
Can we do something about MNA not letting the membership vote on whether to sever its ties with MNA? MN Attorney General?
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 4:01 am
That’s what I am wondering too-because I was not even aware that we should have had the right to vote in this matter.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 6:54 am
This might be a question for the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. Link is in the Blogroll.
Posted by LoveMyJob on June 27, 2010 at 7:50 am
Wow! Why are we just now hearing about this? I wonder how the MNA justifies excluding the members from a vote in this decision? I know I’m getting ahead of my self but can there be an injunction to stop the strike because the NNU/MNA does not have legal standing to negotiate on behalf of the MN Nurses? Where is a lawyer that can answer this??
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 8:22 am
This is potentially explosive to MNA. I am literally speechless. I posted a MNA member advisory. I have a hunch with the exposure this blog is getting that it will garner the appropriate attention.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 8:23 am
Also, an MNA member should email the Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation and ask about this.
Posted by anurse20 on June 27, 2010 at 8:54 am
I wish I could post this on the MNA facebook page. It would last around 30 seconds. Every question I have asked has been removed. I tried to open a facebook account with my strike name but it needs an email. I will call my contact at NRTW in the morning.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 9:02 am
My guess is that MNA and its strike supporters are monitoring this site. It would be interesting to know from those working this weekend if this makes the grapevine.
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 5:03 pm
I will be calling them Monday morning.
Posted by zzzzzzx6 on June 27, 2010 at 9:32 am
A firm named Seaton, Beck and Peters (local firm.) Doug Seaton is the initial contact.
Posted by MNChildrensNurse on June 27, 2010 at 5:04 pm
Very interesting. I will be calling them too. I am wondering if a class action lawsuit is possible? Our union dues are supposed to give us a right to vote and we were denied that right!!!
I am also sending my resignation letter to the union tomorrow and a copy to my employer.
Posted by nostrikefornurses on June 27, 2010 at 5:21 pm
Can’t wait to meet you as this progresses! Thanks for all your help and great research!
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 6:22 pm
I think this would be a Unfair Labor practice by the union and members could file a claim. In addition it should br reported to the Dept. of Labor.
Posted by listenup123 on June 27, 2010 at 4:45 pm
What a great find MNChildrensNurse!! I am so impressed with the level of professionalism, and intelligence on this site. This is the nursing I know and love. I think this blog is a great answer to the MNA facebook page where the only people left posting are the militant people (mostly from California), who continually post videos about union busting. This site is a great example of how nurses can use their critical thinking ability to work through an issue. Bravo to all who are figuring out ways to work through this very difficult time. Keep up the great work!
Posted by Mel on June 27, 2010 at 5:24 am
The information I got from my hospital states that the union can “punish” us for crossing. Does anyone know what they can/will do? Also can you rejoin MNA if you leave and cross?
Posted by anotherview on June 27, 2010 at 5:31 am
Most hospitals are providing information as to what the union can do if you cross. If you resign and croos, they can do nothing. Please check the union by-laws regarding this – and check with your hospital RN information they are putting out. I am sure they would allow you to rejoin – I guess the question is do you really want to be a part of an organization that uses fear, initimidation and threats to create “support”? Unless you want to be a member to change it from the inside.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 6:49 am
also, check out the MNA related FAQ in the FAQ tab at the top.
Posted by nostrikefornurses on June 27, 2010 at 8:45 am
There is a little gray area where the punishment is concerned. And yes I have heard you can rejoin MNA if you want after the strike and they would wecome you back? Not sure if that is really true.
Posted by wyzeguy on June 27, 2010 at 10:44 am
I would think you would be considered a persona non grata. They’ll take your dues but you would get absolutely nothing in return nor would you ever be welcomed back.
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 6:25 pm
I heard hospital MNA reps tell people if you do not strike and cross the picket line they will not represent you in the future. This is another Unfair Labor Practice claim that can be filed.
Posted by Mel on June 27, 2010 at 5:55 am
Since I am forced to pay dues regardless of if I am a member, I might as well be able to vote NO.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 7:01 am
The fact sheet MNA put out said discipline includes: “reprimand, censure, suspension, or expulsion from membership”. So they might prevent you from voting anyway. There is also some confusion about whether MNA can fine you. The fact sheet said they couldn’t but the National Right to Work Legal Foundation has said that courts have upheld fines against union members who cross picket lines. So, it’s up to you if you plan to cross the picket line if you would want to take the chance of being fined. That is actually the only thing with “teeth” that MNA could do besides expulsion.
Posted by anurse20 on June 27, 2010 at 8:10 am
If you want to rejoin MNA when this is all over the NRTW person I spoke with said they can charge you a fee to rejoin. Just know that you are always going to be an outcast with them once you cross.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 8:25 am
You still have contact information for the NRTW person you spoke to? Can you contact the person related to the MNA Member Advisory that I just posted?
Posted by anurse20 on June 27, 2010 at 8:36 am
I will call her tomorrow. She was amazing we talked for a long time and she said they are watching what is happening and are ready to step in if needed.
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 6:27 pm
MNA members need to take charge of this union once this is over. Elect new MNA exec’s and make sure they are on board with a persons right to chose their working status and a NO strike clause.
Posted by Zoe'smom on June 27, 2010 at 1:59 pm
I have emailed the MNA Union Labor Relation’s person for my hospital asking what does “discipline” for crossing the picket line entail. If I get a response I will copy and post it. At this time I intend to cross and maintain my membership so that I may vote. One does not need to resign from the union in order to work.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 2:07 pm
please take a look at the “tips if you work during the strike” and the MNA FAQ documents in the FAQ’s tab at the top of the page.
Posted by anurse20 on June 27, 2010 at 10:44 pm
Please go to http://www.nrtw.org and go to the tab that says rights, then go to private sector about 1/2 way down the page. Or just call the number and talk to them. They will give you the right info.
Remember MN is not a right to work state.
Just be informed!
Posted by LoveMyJob on June 27, 2010 at 7:43 am
I looked for the StarTribune article this morning, both online and in my newspaper, and couldn’t find it. I know a couple of you had mentioned that you were interviewed for an article that was going to be in today. Can anyone direct me to it?
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 7:45 am
same here. The reporter said it could get bumped. I’ve emailed her about it.
Posted by LoveMyJob on June 27, 2010 at 7:59 am
I was hoping for another front page story covering this angle. It’ is such and important story I hope it gets a prominent place early this week.
Posted by nostrikefornurses on June 27, 2010 at 8:30 am
I too was looking for the artcle about the interviews this morning but didn’t see it in there yet.
Posted by nostrikefornurses on June 27, 2010 at 8:41 am
Did not see it today.
Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2010 at 9:27 am
I think the statements the nurses have made to the Star Tribune reporter will eventually appear in the news. This is a concern and hot topic in our community and the Star Tribune recognizes most articles written about the possible strike has significant responses posted to each of their online articles. It would be important to present a well rounded picture of the possible nursing strike which includes actual nurses speaking out for and against the strike.
Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2010 at 9:47 am
This is an interesting article in how MNA approach to the media.
Posted by LoveMyJob on June 27, 2010 at 2:40 pm
Braublog had a follow up a couple days later which included an apology from Nemo. Seems he’s been working long hours and was under stress… go figure!?
Posted by rndmcrzyktty on June 27, 2010 at 7:17 pm
Nemo sounds like such a hothead in the article. The line he is quoted as saying, “We don’t need the mainstream media to tell our story. We built our whole campaign around social networking — 10,000 fans on Facebook, and MNAblog.com gets 8-10,000 hits a day. It’s not 1988 any more. ” This makes it totally sound like a politcal campaign, like someone running for office. I thought they were trying to negoiate a contract, who knew!
Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2010 at 9:10 am
If I had to look at a change in how hospitals present their information, I believe they should find a better speaker/media representative. I believe a nurses would be better reference for their press releases as well as speaking to the media. I am sure the hospitals has a nurse who could better represent them in the media. However, there was a physician who spoke to the media from Abbott the day of the strke and she has a better personality and communicated to the media in a better tone which I haven’t seen in Maureen.
Posted by Leyla on June 27, 2010 at 9:36 am
I’m so glad I’ve continued to browse the comments in our local newspapers online articles.
One individual posted a link to MNA’s 2009 financial records:
On that page enter File # 053-683
It’s rather interesting to see where they’ve been spending the $12,294,042 they received in dues and agency fees. They’ve spent tens of thousands of dollars on hotels. $53,0707 on airfare. Many of their lobbyists make over $100,000/year, for a total of $4,872,250 in salaries to employees for “Political Activities and Lobbying.”
Funny thing, I didn’t see a single line dedicating funds to a strike fund. I’ve seen a lot of people post on facebook requesting information regarding what they can expect by way of financial support during this strike. MNA insists there’s a strike fund for those who can prove “financial hardship.” Yet they are incapable of outlining in writing what they are able to offer their members, or the parameters they will require members to meet in order to prove financial hardship. I certainly wouldn’t be counting on the MNA to provide any relief.
Posted by Steaming on June 27, 2010 at 9:59 am
Great work. I knew it was out there some where. How sick. Also, the hardship paperwork asks, “Have you depleted your savings account? If not Why?
Have you depleted all your assets? If not why? I am guessing a MNA RN won’t see a penny.
Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2010 at 11:46 am
I think this is an important link in how some MNA (Mass. Nursing Association) nurses have started a facebook regarding the NNU. I think every nurse in MNA should see this facebook page.
Posted by Tom on June 27, 2010 at 12:58 pm
Just finished reading entries in this section of the blog. Many new names and interesting commentary on crossing the picket line. I just heard today about another significant dimension to how staffing might be sustained during the increasingly likely strike. As many of you represent here, there are RNs who will cross at their own hospital; however, there is a growing number of what I would call “east-west” crossers. That is, RNs who intend to cross a picket line but are applying to work in a hospital other than their own — e.g., United Hospital nurses crossing a Fairview Southdale picket line, etc. This is a development I didn’t anticipate. There are also a number of out-state and out-of-state RNs who are interviewing at specific hospitals and bypassing the “travelling agencies”. In both cases, these RNs will be paid more modestly than the agency rates — and the hospitals are able to interview and engage them directly so I would think there would be less criticism (true or not) about “unqualified scabs”.
Posted by anotherview on June 27, 2010 at 1:03 pm
I know Allina is going to allow RN’s who wish to cross to work at other hospitals in the system if they wish. They just need to tell the person when they call to sign up.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 1:18 pm
I would guess that if they withhold that information and the hospitals find out they will be shown the door.
Posted by Angie on June 27, 2010 at 5:30 pm
I have also heard of RN’s planning to cross at a hospital other than your own. Don’t get me wrong, I am glad people are planning to cross, but I’m not sure what I think of that idea. If they are trying to remain anonymous, good luck. I believe the union will find out. Also, I think you run the risk of losing your regular job, if this goes a long time or is ruled an economic strike. Anyone, feel free to weigh in!
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 6:35 pm
I think when you make the decision to cross the picket line to care for our patients you should be proud and hold your head high! After all this is the right thing to do and in time everyone will see that your actions were noble and todays “strikers” will be the outsiders.
Posted by anonymousrn on June 27, 2010 at 8:47 pm
I worked during the strike on the 10th. Management were there to help us. The techs were a lot of help too.
Posted by nostrikefornurses on June 27, 2010 at 3:25 pm
Very good points Tom…..and scarey for those who are not crossing as this strike could go on for a long time….wonder how many nurses will continue to picket 6 months from now? And then it may be too late for those to cross even if they want to.
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 6:36 pm
My bet is after a pay period with NO income many nurses will try to go back to their jobs if the hospitals let them and if there are any jobs left.
Posted by wildfox on June 27, 2010 at 9:07 pm
MNA already has ancillary staff in the hospitals who are going to report to them who crosses the picket line. I overheard hospital MNA reps asking NA’s, HUC’s if they would do this.
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 9:09 pm
That’s why it is advisable to resign if you plan to cross the picket line.
Posted by notsureyet on June 27, 2010 at 6:47 pm
Can other members press charges against us if we have resigned from MNA prior to crossing? I tried to read back but still unsure of this. And if they can- what does that include for us? Does anyone know?
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 6:51 pm
read the MNA related FAQ in the FAQ’s tab at the top. It addresses disciplinary actions that MNA may take. That’s why it’s advisable to resign from MNA if you are going to cross the picket line.
Posted by L&D RN"SCAB" on June 27, 2010 at 7:08 pm
I have worked at too many hosptals to name in several states, both union and non-union. I can tell you the differences between union and non unin hosptals are pretty big. I don’t like the idea of unions bullying hospitals and taking nurses along for the ride. The Union makes great money for an easy job-and most nurses are fine with that and happy for the benefits until a strike. Union hospitals do have much better pay and benefits. The staffing is better since there is usually a limit on low census days an RN must take and a min. staffing policy. A non union hosptal can staff how they choose,pays less with min benefits and there is no job security. I have seen nurses show up to work, the unit manager is in a bad mood and fires them on the spot. So there are great benefits to a union. Imagine if your hosptal management could just do as they please! I’m so sorry to see so much anger between the nurses. A few mad,loud nurses can sure stir up a group. I wish you all could talk tot he nurses in Honolulu who were out for 7 weeks in 2002. They did lose some paychecks but they made it and they ended up with a great wage,benefit and staffing package. They could give you all advice on crossing,not crossing,surviving without a paycheck….best of luck to you all. As a nurse and a mother I just don’t know what I would do. We all want better working enviroments but we don’t want pt’s to suffer or risk losing our homes.I don’t think you guys will like not having a union-but you need your union to better represent you all. I will keep you all in my prayers!
Posted by notsureyet on June 27, 2010 at 7:55 pm
Good information and much appreciated! Lots to think about… thanks for posting!
Posted by Anonymous on June 27, 2010 at 9:39 pm
The expected article is now up:
Posted by drichmn on June 27, 2010 at 10:02 pm
Thanks for the heads up.
Posted by Me XMan on June 27, 2010 at 11:37 pm
I support your decision in not joining the strike.
Best of luck and thank you.
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