Nurses union calls for incentive pay, bonuses from Washington hospitals

As many nurses and front-line workers go on strike during the staffing crisis, the Washington State Nurses Association laid out several actions Oct. 19 it recommends hospitals take to improve working conditions.

According to a union press release, these actions include:

  • Ending mandatory overtime policies
  • Retention bonuses for those who have continued working throughout the pandemic
  • Incentive pay for those who take extra shifts
  • Incentive pay and appropriate orientation for those who do extra work or shifts outside of their department
  • Improving staffing levels by posting enough positions in all job categories and actively working to fill those positions

"We've heard near-unani­mous agree­ment around the problem," said Julia Barcott, RN, a critical care nurse in Toppenish and union leader. ​"That's great. But only one voice in this conver­sa­tion has the ability to immedi­ately begin fixing this problem, and that's the hospi­tals. It's past time we saw meaningful action and policy changes from them, for the sake of our front­line workers and for patients and families across the state."

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