Swedish Medical Center, union resume negotiations after 3-day strike

Seattle-based Swedish Medical Center and the union representing its nurses and caregivers resumed negotiations this week for the first time since ending their three-day walkout Jan. 31, reports The Seattle Times. 

Both sides returned to the bargaining table Feb. 10 with a federal mediator. Negotiations lasted more than eight hours.

"Our team is in an ongoing facilitated bargaining session with [Service Employees International Union Healthcare 1199NW], and we hope we can make progress," hospital spokesperson Tiffany Moss wrote Feb. 10 in a message to the Times.

A union statement cited by the newspaper said SEIU Healthcare 1199NW members "are working to come to agreement on a fair contract," but hospital management "has not moved on its proposals and continues to be unresponsive to caregivers' proposals for safe staffing."

"In fact, management's proposals would make recruitment and retention worse than the situation that's already been reported," the statement added.

The strike of about 7,800 SEIU Healthcare 1199NW members began at 7 a.m. Jan. 28 and ended at 7:30 a.m. Jan. 31. 

During the walkout, Swedish brought in temporary workers to replace striking ones. Hospital officials said contract provisions required a five-day commitment to temporary caregivers, and Swedish workers were called back to their jobs in accordance with contract provisions as work was available.

The last contract covering SEIU-represented Swedish Medical Center workers expired at the end of July.


More articles on human resources:
UPMC nurses get new 3-year contract
HealthPartners clinic employees slam 'measly' wage offer, file 10-day strike notice
Michigan nurses accuse Beaumont Royal Oak of anti-union activity

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