Providence strike set to begin June 18: 6 things to know

Nurses at six Providence facilities in Oregon are set to begin a three-day strike this week.

Six things to know:

1. The strike is scheduled to begin at 6 a.m. on June 18. 

2. Approximately 3,000 members of the Oregon Nurses Association are slated to participate in the strike, according to the union. They work at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland, Providence Newberg (Ore.) Medical Center, Willamette Falls Medical Center in Oregon City, Providence Medford (Ore.) Medical Center, Providence Hood River (Ore.) Memorial Hospital, and Providence Milwaukie (Ore.) Hospital.

3. The union contends that in bargaining, hospital management has not responded to their concerns with serious proposals. It says nurses seek affordable and quality healthcare, as well as market-competitive pay. 

4. On June 10, Jennifer Burrows, RN, chief executive of Providence Oregon, shared a statement with Becker's, saying that since negotiations began, management has proposed "substantial wage increases and contract enhancements that our nurses have requested." She added that caregivers who are benefit-eligible have access to the same health package.

5. Oregon's hospital staffing law has also been a topic of contention. The union claims Providence is violating Oregon's hospital staffing law "through its unilateral adoption of staffing plans and its repudiation of the safe patient care standards reflected in many existing staffing plans." Providence contends it is following the law as written and that the union's positions are "inconsistent with the statutory language."

6. The strike is slated to end at 6 a.m. on June 21. The union claims Providence will be locking staff nurses out after the strike. Providence said it is bringing in replacement workers for five days because that is the contractual replacement period needed to attract high-quality replacement workers from across the U.S.

More information about the strike is available here and here

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