Iowa City hospital workers union says buses to distant parking lots weren't provided during snowstorm

Cold weather has intensified negotiations between Iowa City-based University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and unionized employees, according to The Gazette.

In a Feb. 12 Facebook post, the Service Employees International Union Iowa – UIHC Chapter says hospital officials are leaving employees "out in the cold."

"We've heard some troubling stories about UIHC employees stranded at the hospital at the end of their shifts … during the [recent] snowstorm. People who got off after 7:30 p.m. said there were no buses or vans running out to the Arena-Finkbine lots. That left them walking roughly a mile to their cars in the middle of the storm, or paying for an Uber to get them there," the post stated.

After the union put up the post, several  employees shared stories related to cold weather and frustrations they've had with parking, transportation and other issues.

UIHC spokesperson Tom Moore told The Gazette that employees receive notice of weather events and "many hotels offer discounted rates for those who live outside the area and need to stay in town."

The hospital also makes space available for staff inside the facility, he said.

There's also 24-hour emergency service to jump start cars or provide rides, and there are shelters from the cold available for employees to wait for a bus, he said.

The union's remarks come as it is in contract negotiations with the hospital. The hospital's previous offer was rejected by workers. 

 

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