Beaumont nurses accuse hospital administration of interfering with unionization

Nurses at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak (Mich.) claim hospital administrators are participating in anti-union activities to prevent organizing, according to a union news release.

About 100 nurses, who want to join the Michigan Nurses Association, launched their organizing campaign in April. They said the push is partially driven by their desire for improved staffing levels and "better opportunities to provide quality care." 

The group of nurses pushing for unionization represents just 3 percent of the hospital's 3,200 nurses, according to The Oakland Press.

Now the group of nurses pushing for unionization allege hospital administrators are forcing them to attend union-busting meetings during work hours. They said these meetings are run by outside consultants wanting to disrupt and prevent nurses from exercising their right to unionize.

"Beaumont can't keep pulling RNs away from the work we love — looking after our patients — to spread their anti-union propaganda. It's bad for nurses, it's bad for our community and it's bad for our patients," said Liz Martinez, RN.

Nurses recently expressed their concerns to the Oakland County Board of Commissioners on June 13.

Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, part of Southfield, Mich.-based Beaumont Health, disputed the nurses' allegations.

Susan Grant, DNP, BSN, RN, executive vice president and CNO of Beaumont Health, told The Press the meetings are not designed to interfere with unionization but to provide nurses with information on organizing from the National Labor Relations Board.

"The educators that are hosting these meetings are providing nurses with content directly from the National Labor Relations Board booklet," said Ms. Grant. "We are providing education for all nurses so that they understand the full scope of their rights as employees in making a fully informed decision. Nurses are asking questions about what being unionized would mean for them. This is an important matter for them."

She also told the newspaper that hospital administrators fully support and respect the workers' right to unionize but do not believe the nurses pushing for organizing have views that are fully representative of the hospital's entire nurse population.


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