No resolution to Baystate Franklin, union dispute after 1 year: 7 updates

A dispute between Greenfield, Mass.-based Baystate Franklin Medical Center and nurses represented by the Massachusetts Nurses Association is ongoing more than a year into negotiations.

Here are seven updates on the dispute.

1. Both sides have been in negotiations since November 2016. Negotiations have been contentious at times, resulting in a one-day strike in June.

2. The latest negotiation sessions took place Jan. 11 and Jan. 17. However, there is still no conclusion to the dispute in sight, according to a Daily Hampshire Gazette report.

3. The publication reports both sides saw the recent negotiations differently. According to the report, the MNA contends contract talks have "broken down," and Baystate Franklin claims there have been "positive proposals" and "a number of outstanding issues" were resolved.

4. In a statement to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, union spokesperson Joe Markman said: "We were able to secure a few tentative agreements, but management will not agree to core nurse proposals."

5. Baystate Franklin spokesperson Molly Macmunn also provided a statement to the publication, saying the hospital's proposals "reflect our good faith effort to create a fair contract and we hope to reach a resolution soon."

6. Staffing remains a key sticking point in the dispute. The MNA has advocated for not assigning patients to nurses in supervisory positions, as well as "safe staffing ratios," according to the report. Ms. Macmunn told the Daily Hampshire Gazette in regards to staffing: "Among the recommended proposals was an updated approach to staffing that we believe provides flexibility and assures that we meet our shared goal of delivering high quality patient care in a community setting."

7. The MNA plans to hold an "urgent membership meetings" to discuss next steps.


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