Rhode Island nurses set strike date

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Nurses at Rhode Island Hospital and Hasbro Children's Hospital in Providence plan to strike beginning July 23, according to a Providence Journal report.

The three-day strike is slated to begin at 3 p.m. local time that day and end at 3 p.m. July 26, according to the United Nurses and Allied Professionals Local 5098, which represents the workers.

The strike date announcement comes after nurses rejected a tentative three-year agreement with the hospitals' parent company, Providence-based Lifespan. A strike could still be averted if both sides reach a resolution.

"We do not take this step lightly and urge Lifespan executives to return to the bargaining table as quickly as possible so that a fair and competitive deal may be reached," said local union president Frank Sims, RN..

"Our members took up their professions because they wanted to help and care for people, and they remain among the best-trained and most-dedicated health workers in our state. But their dedication has only been met by derision, as Lifespan fails to value and properly support the lifesaving work our members perform every day. That must change."

In a statement to the Providence Journal, hospital officials expressed disappointment that nurses rejected the latest proposal, "considering the generous contract offer made by the hospital—a proposal that the union's own leadership endorsed. This is unfortunate for the patients, the hospital and the entire community."

Hospital officials have been preparing for a strike, including what they say is "a comprehensive plan to adequately staff our hospital and meet the needs of our patients. Ideally, we want Rhode Island Hospital nurses caring for our patients, but, in the event of a strike, the hospital is fully prepared to deliver the care our patients need at optimal staffing levels."

UNAP Local 5098 represents 2,400 nurses, therapists, technologists and other professionals at Rhode Island and Hasbro Children's hospitals. Pay has been among the key sticking points in negotiations.

 

More articles on human capital and risk:
Rhode Island hospital workers reject Lifespan offer, plan to strike
McLaren Lapeer Region nurses authorize strike
Research Says Nurses from All Generations Want the Same Thing at Work

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