Union in Brief – August 2012
Chino RNs Make Steady Progress
Negotiations for a first contract at Chino Valley Medical Center are moving along at a good pace. The negotiating team had to educate management that RNs have the right to pass out union literature and wear UNAC/UHCP pins in the hospital. Talks at the table have been productive. Watch your email for information.
Kaiser National Agreement Ratified
UNAC/UHCP members at Kaiser facilities ratified a new three-year Kaiser contract in July. The agreement was achieved after hundreds attended bargaining, and thousands were united through worksite activity. Ratification meetings for the first contract for the Specialty Care Nurses of Southern California (SCNSC) and the Kaiser Permanente Midwives and Wound Ostomy Nurses (KPMWON) groups began in July and conclude in August.
UNAC/UHCP Helps Defeat Waiver of Staffing Ratios During Meals and Breaks
When the proposal to waive staffing ratios on all units during meals and breaks was suddenly up for consideration as a part of the California State budget, our legislative team leapt into action. We made sure legislators and other labor leaders understood the language was bad for patients, bad for nurses and must be stopped. As a result, the proposal was removed from the budget.
Favorable Settlement Won for Kaiser Primary Care Advice RNs!
After a long, hard-fought battle, UNAC/UHCP reached a settlement agreement with Kaiser on two grievances concerning patient safety and workload for primary care advice RNs. To improve message management, the agreement establishes joint labor-management committees charged with the mission of planning for coverage of scheduled time off for primary care RNs who triage patient phone and e-mail messages through Kaiser’s Health-Connect system. The committees, consisting of UNAC/UHCP representatives, department RNs, and Kaiser management, first will be formed at four Kaiser Medical Office Buildings (MOBs), where members actively communicated problems to the Union arising from the RNs’ role in triaging messages. The agreement includes a timeline for the committees to accomplish their work and an escalation process for issues not resolved at the local level. The agreement also provides a mechanism for advice RNs at MOBs other than the four identified to use this committee process upon request and mutual agreement. The eleven-point agreement was the result of advice RNs’ feedback coupled with the commitment and dedication to this important patient care issue by UNAC/UHCP’s team, composed of Assistant Director of Collective Bargaining and Representation Suzanne Delaney, Staff Representatives Denise Duncan, Arthereane McLaughlin, and Kim Smith, UNAC/UHCP President Ken Deitz, and UNAC/UHCP Attorney Richa Amar. The complete settlement agreement can be found online at UNAC/UHCP’s website.