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Tenet Nurses, Healthcare Workers Take Action to Protest Sick Leave Cuts
Date:7/21/2009

OAKLAND, Calif., July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Registered nurses and hospital workers who provide care at hospitals owned by Tenet Healthcare Corporation organized an unprecedented national protest today against attempts to cut their access to sick leave.

Tenet healthcare workers who belong to both the National Nurses Organizing Committee/California Nurses Association (NNOC/CNA) and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare leafleted at nine hospitals in Florida and California.

The caregivers called on Tenet management to reverse its decision to restrict or eliminate access to employees' extended sick leave.

"Every day, we are on the frontlines for responding to health threats like the H1N1 virus. It's basic common sense that nurses and other caregivers should not go to work if we're sick ourselves. But these cuts will make it harder for us to take care of ourselves. It's not too late for Tenet to rethink and redo this by restoring our extended sick leave," said Sherri Stoddard, an RN at Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, California and a member of NNOC/CNA.

"It was shocking that Tenet didn't even consult with us before making this decision. Every day we work together as a team to provide high-quality care to every patient we admit. But with a decision like this -- one that hurts how we work as a team of caregivers -- we got no input," said Besty Marville, an RN in the Trauma/ICU unit at St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach, Florida and a member of SEIU Healthcare Florida.

Previously, Tenet employees could earn leave for up to 30 days to be deposited into an "Extended Illness Bank" to tap into in the event that they were ill for more than one week. Tenet unilaterally took away current caregivers' ability to build up new hours in their banks and eliminated the bank for new hires.


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SOURCE National Nurses Organizing Committee/California Nurses Association; SEIU Healthcare
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