Rhode Island hospital workers reject Lifespan offer, plan to strike

Nurses at Rhode Island Hospital and Hasbro Children's Hospital plan to strike after rejecting management's latest contract offer, according to a Providence Journal report.

Nurses at the Providence, R.I.-based hospitals, who are represented by United Nurses and Allied Professionals Local 5098, rejected a tentative three-year agreement and plan to issue a 10-day strike notice. A strike could still be averted if the workers and the hospitals' parent company, Providence-based Lifespan, reach a resolution.

Union president Frank Sims, RN, said in a news release he will try to schedule more negotiations with Lifespan. The most recent proposal rejected by nurses "devalues the critical role they play in providing world-class healthcare," Mr. Sims said.

"Lifespan's short-sighted and punitive policies on everything from safe staffing to sick time have a direct correlation to the remarkably high turnover rate we experience at Rhode Island Hospital," he said. "Health professionals are leaving at unprecedented rates because Lifespan fails to give caregivers the tools we need to do our jobs and offers a compensation and benefit package that is not fair to all healthcare workers."

In a statement to the Providence Journal, hospital officials expressed disappointment that nurses rejected the latest proposal, which "included an extremely competitive wage and benefits package."

The statement adds that hospital officials want "our nurses caring for our patients," and that they are "fully prepared to adequately staff our hospital and meet the needs of our patients" if a strike takes place.



More articles on human capital and risk: 

Providence hospital RNs get pay raises in new contract
Catholic Health hospital employees picket amid contract negotiations
Rhode Island Hospital reaches tentative labor deal with nurses

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