Meriter

Meriter RNs Reach Tentative Agreement

MERITER-UPDATE

Yesterday, the Meriter RN Bargaining Team reached a tentative agreement with Meriter management. After nine months of  negotiations, we came to a tentative agreement that the RN Bargaining Team can stand behind.

Throughout this process, we came together as a union. We want to thank you for your dedication and commitment to each other as a union through these nine months. Together, we stood strong.

A ratification vote will occur next week on Wednesday, September 18th at the Labor Temple in Room 201C from 7:30 AM – 8:00 PM.

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Meriter RNs Rally for Fair Contract

The 720 RNs at Meriter Hospital are at odds with hospital management in contract bargaining over issues that could affect the quality of care for their patients.  Joined by community and labor leaders, the RNs of Meriter Hospital held a solidarity picket on September 4th at Brittingham Park to rally for a fair contract that protects quality care.

As dedicated healthcare professionals, the nurses remain concerned that the proposals put forth by Meriter could diminish their ability to provide the high quality of care we’ve come to expect from Meriter Hospital.  One proposal by Meriter includes giving the hospital more “flexibility” with their staffing such as being able to ‘float’ nurses to different, unfamiliar floors and not providing nurses with an adequate voice in staffing based on complex patient healthcare needs.

Click here to view more photos from the event.

News clips from action:

 

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9/4: Solidarity Picnic Picket for Meriter RNs!

Right now, Meriter RNs are at odds with hospital management in contract bargaining over issues that could affect the quality of care for their patients.  Show your solidarity by joining your union brothers and sisters at a Solidarity Picnic Picket tomorrow:

Solidarity Picnic Picket for Meriter RNs
** Please bring your own food & beverages. **
Wednesday, September 4th – 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Brittingham Park (401 S Brittingham Place, Madison, WI 53715)
Corner of Park & West Washington

If Meriter fails to respect these front line workers and their fight for working conditions that promote high quality care, the working families of our city will take a huge step backward. That’s not something the Madison Metro area can afford, especially in these economic times.

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Match the Salary to the Person!

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Meriter has gone on the record that the average RN at Meriter makes $95,000 a year. We know this to be untrue.

If they’re playing guessing games with how much their core workforce is making, take a moment to guess how much the chief executives at Meriter make! 

Options: A. $855,387   B. $351,975    C. $391,627  D. $490,022   E. $199,349  F. $60,000

Look for the answers next week! We’ll see you at bargaining on September 9th and 10th so you can show Management why they need to value their award-winning RNs.

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Meriter RNs: What we’ve accomplished together.

In the spirit of taking a closer look at our achievements as RNs, we thought it would be a prime opportunity to focus on the things we as a Union have fought and won through collective action and at the bargaining table over the years. 

Here are a few accomplishments:

Ban on mandatory overtime

12 hour shifts

Every third weekend off

Cyclic scheduling

Rotating shifts limited to 2 shift rotations

Tuition reimbursement

3 months leave for child rearing

Short-term medical disability

The Weekender Program

Floating task force

Limiting floating to clusters & eliminate house-wide floating

Holiday & Vacation guidelines

Unit floating guidelines

Clinical Ladder

Affordable health insurance with excellent coverage

Scheduling Solutions Committee

Job posting guidelines

Work Design Teams

Permanent shifts (15% straight days)

No changes to posted schedule

25 years weekends off

22 years no holidays and decrease call

ET cash out

ET

Call pay

Per Diem Program

PRN nurse Program

Variable FTE Program

Just cause

Award-winning quality care by award-winning nurses

Call pay

OR Call Bonus

OR Coordinator Pay

Wage steps based on seniority

Weekend shift differentials & Double Shift Stipend

Time and a half for working your off weekend

Those are just some of the many accomplishment we have achieved over the years.For over 30 years, the Meriter RNs have stood strong together, and in doing so have made Meriter and its patients better, happier, and healthier. Your bargaining team would like to say thank you for standing strong together yet again. We’ll be back at the bargaining table with all of you on September 9th and 10th. 

 

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Meriter RNs Reject Management’s Final Proposal

Yesterday, Meriter RNs voted to reject by 90% of the vote, Meriter Hospital’s final bargaining proposal which could decrease the quality of care patients receive.

SEIU Healthcare Wisconsin represents 720 RNs at Meriter Hospital who are standing strong at the bargaining table. As nurses, they want to ensure that they can provide the highest quality of care for every current and future patient.  In the proposals put forth by Meriter, Meriter will want more “flexibility” with their staffing such as being able to ‘float’ nurses to different, unfamiliar floors and not providing nurses with an adequate voice in staffing based on complex patient healthcare needs.

Other proposals included:

    •  Cut Health Insurance by nearly doubling the employee contribution while increasing co-pays, deductibles, and out of pocket maximum.  Nurses are exposed to every illness imaginable and to the harshest of chemicals for infection control.  Nurses who care for others deserve quality and affordable healthcare for themselves.
    • Institute a 14 day waiting period for short-term medical disability (STMD) compensation. This is a problem with our aging nurse population which due to the stress and strain of moving patients and being on their feet for 8+ hour shifts, many nurses experience joint surgeries, back surgeries, rotator cuff surgeries, etc.  For our junior nurses, nurses would have to use their whole allotment of paid time off before STMD kicks in for pregnancies and other short-term issues.   Paid time off is necessary as nurses work overtime and are on-call for emergencies and other spikes in patient care needs.

 

 

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Meriter RNs: Management offer vote TOMORROW!

Management’s final offer includes items like a layoff procedure that would leave agency working while other RNs are being laid off.  In the midst of a layoff, if you don’t have a specific “skill set” as determined by Meriter, you won’t be able to be placed on a different unit. Probationary RNs would be working while you are laid off in Meriter’s system.  With the talk of “partnership”, it is important that we protect RNs in the event of a layoff or mass hour reduction.

That’s not all. Other proposals include:

  • Floating – Management has proposed, “Nothing precludes an RN from floating outside of her assigned floating cluster.” Clusters are to be reviewed by Management after Jan. 1, 2015, possibly changing the number of units you can float to.
  • Health Insurance – a 10% increase in premiums to the Custom Plan along with higher out-of-pocket costs and drug co-pays.
  • Short-term Medical Disability – coverage at 66% instead of 72%, and only after 14 calendar days have gone by instead of the current 3.
  • Working on Your Weekend Off – instead of getting the current time and a half, management is proposing a reduction so that 25 year + RNs receive $7/hr and Non-25 Year RNs receive $5/hr.
  • OR/PACU bonus – management proposes to eliminate this, while due to staffing changes the OR is now required to take 39 hours of call above their FTE/month.
  • Double Shift Bonus – rather than receiving this after 3.5 hours, management is proposing that you receive it after 4 hours (impacting you after working 12+ hrs)
  • Wellness Program – management is asking us to forfeit our right to bargain over this issue in the future regardless of whether it becomes mandatory for all employees.

No agreement has been reached because your bargaining team cannot endorse proposals like this, nor should you. This vote is very different from those in the past. Vote and have your own voice be heard.

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Meriter RNs – It’s Time to Vote!

You’ve heard both sides. Now is your turn to speak out and send a message. 
 
Management’s final offer includes items like the layoff procedure that would leave agency working while other RNs are being laid off.  In the midst of a layoff, if you don’t have a specific “skill set” as determined by Meriter, you won’t be able to be placed on a different unit.  Probationary RNs would be working while you are laid off in Meriter’s system.  With the talk of “partnership”, it is important that we protect RNs in the event of a layoff or mass hour reduction.

 

Your bargaining team cannot endorse proposals like this, nor should you. Vote and have your own voice be heard.

 

Tuesday, July 30th
 7:30 AM—8:30 PM
The Labor Temple 
1602 S. Park Street, Room 201 C
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Legislators Stand with Meriter Nurses

Legislators throughout Wisconsin have been showing their support for Meriter Nurses and our efforts to achieve a fair and balanced collective bargaining agreement.

Most recently, the Dane County Board unanimously passed a resolution in support of the Meriter Nurses at their last meeting on July 18th. This will go on the record with the County Board and be sent directly to Meriter Hospital.

Additionally, several Wisconsin Senators and Representatives signed a joint letter supporting the Meriter Nurses. The signatories included Sen. Fred Risser, Sen. Jon Erpenbach, Sen. Mark Miller, Rep. Chris Taylor, Rep. Melissa Sargent, Rep. Terese Berceau, Rep. Fred Clark, Rep. Sondy Pope, Rep. Dianne Hesselbein, Rep. Brett Hulsey, Rep. Gary Hebl, and Rep. Robb Kahl.

Please follow the link here to read the full text of the Dane County Board Resolution or click here to read the collective letter signed by Wisconsin State Senators and Representatives.

The community is continuing to stand strong with its nurses.

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Meriter RNs Fight for Quality Care

Meriter RNs Mary Malaney and William Schmitz were on the People’s Mic to discuss current contract negotiations at Meriter Hospital. Click here to listen to the interview.

720 union RNs are standing strong, working to prevent dangerous proposals that could endanger quality care. In a recent letter to the editor, the Meriter RNs explained the situation “As nurses, we want to ensure Meriter provides the highest quality of care for patients. That’s why we’re calling on Meriter to live up to its espoused values as we negotiate our contract. Meriter wants more “flexibility” with its staffing, such as being able to “float” nurses to different, unfamiliar floors. Asking a nurse to do this is like having an English teacher teach chemistry.”

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