Amid contract talks, Vermont medical center halts union dues collection

University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington has stopped collecting union dues from nurses amid negotiations for a new contract, according to a Seven Days report.

The previous contract for 1,800 nurses represented by the Vermont Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals Local 5221 expired July 9. It included a provision stipulating the hospital automatically collect union dues from nurses' biweekly paychecks before giving the money to the union, according to Seven Days. But UVM Medical Center spokesperson Michael Carrese confirmed the provision, which was agreed upon by both sides, stated the dues collection arrangement would end with the expiration of the contract.

He said changing dues collection was not a proactive decision by the hospital, but rather a decision to abide by the previous labor deal.

Deb Snell, RN, executive vice president of the Vermont Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals, told Seven Days the union anticipates most members will pay dues voluntarily, and the union is considering e-billing and other payments alternatives for the future.

"We are now assisting the union with its efforts to collect dues in a new way," said Mr. Carrese. 


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