Pennsylvania nurses authorize strike

Nurses at Indiana (Pa.) Regional Medical Center have voted to authorize union leaders to call a strike, The Indiana Gazette reported.

The vote, which took place Oct. 23, covers nurses represented by the Indiana Registered Nurses Association, an affiliate of HealthCare-PSEA, the Pennsylvania State Education Association.

The vote gives union leaders the ability to call a strike without further member input. Union leaders would have to give  the hospital at least 10 days' notice before walking off the job.

"Our approach for bargaining is to enter with open minds and an eagerness to reach an agreement that helps our nurses and our hospital to continue to move forward," IRNA President Kathy Wolfe told The Indiana Gazette. "We hope that the hospital shares our willingness to settle, but they've unfortunately had a 'take it or leave it' approach. That kind of attitude shows they're not ready to seriously bargain with us."

Mark Richards, the medical center's growth officer, told the publication hospital officials are disappointed in the strike authorization vote, "but it is not uncommon for this to occur."

He said the hospital has been bargaining in good faith, and more bargaining sessions are scheduled before the current contract expires Oct. 31. He indicated that changes in fringe benefits is a key issue in negotiations.


More articles on human capital and risk:

University of California workers go on strike
Hospitals and unions: 12 recent conflicts, agreements
Nurses from 2 Arizona hospitals vote to unionize


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