More Northwell nurses reach tentative labor deal

Members of the New York State Nurses Association and Northwell Health's Long Island Jewish Valley Stream (N.Y.) have reached a tentative labor contract, averting a looming strike.

The tentative agreement, reached Feb. 18, includes staffing improvements, addition of new nurse positions in the emergency department holding area, improved benefits including pension improvements, and pay increases, according to a union news release shared with Becker's. The union plans to release additional details about the agreement pending a Feb. 20 ratification vote.

The deal follows a tentative agreement reached earlier this month between the NYSNA and Northwell's Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead, N.Y. The union previously announced plans to strike at Peconic and LIJ Valley Stream beginning Feb. 21 unless tentative contracts could be reached beforehand.  

Sandra Armstrong, RN, a veteran nurse leader at LIJ Valley Stream, said in the union release, "Nurses put our lives on the line because we care about our patients. That's why I became a nurse, and that's why we were ready to do whatever it takes to achieve safe staffing and fair wages to retain nurses and provide excellent care for our Valley Stream community. I'm proud of our nurses for remaining united and ready to fight until Northwell agreed to a fair contract."

Northwell shared the following statement with Becker's: "LIJ Valley Stream Hospital is pleased to have reached a tentative agreement with NYSNA. This announcement also accompanies NYSNA's withdrawing its advance strike notice. From the start of negotiations, our sole focus remained on ensuring that our patients continue to receive world-class care and our dedicated nurses can continue to provide that care in the best environment. The agreement provides competitive compensation and benefits and reaffirms our commitment to our team members and patients."

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