California's Biggest RN Strike This Decade As Nurses Take a Stand for Safe
OAKLAND, Calif., Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Taking a stand for improving patient care standards, nearly 5,000 registered nurses will begin a two-day strike at 15 Northern California hospitals this morning in California's largest strike of registered nurses in a decade. All but two of the hospitals are part of the big Sutter health chain and include some of the largest hospitals in the Bay Area.
The strike issues for Sutter RNs are:
* Patient care protections at Sutter hospitals
* Reductions in health care coverage and retirement security for Sutter
* Sutter proposals to eliminate essential patient care services in Bay
The California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee, which represents the RNs, said it hopes Sutter corporate executives will finally get the message from their caregivers that significant improvements are needed.
"Sutter RNs have made a choice. They are dedicated to improving patient care conditions and they have decided to step up and protect their communities," said CNA/NNOC Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro.
"Their commitment is about their patients and advocacy for those patients and protecting the community health. Sutter should work with the nurses and CNA to turn this healthcare system around. It should treat its nurses with respect, and listen to them," DeMoro said.
Support is also growing for the RNs from labor and community leaders across Northern California.
"Sutter Health has violated our trust and the fundamental safety of patients by refusing to ensure safe conditions for its patients," said Art Pulaski, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, in a statement this morning.
"This company has sidestepped its patient-care responsibilities by deciding to close hospitals and reduce services simply so it may increase its bottom line," Pulaski said. "The labor movement of California supports the California Nurses Association and the Sutter RNs in their fight for patient safety, a fair contract, and quality patient care for our communities."
Sutter hospitals affected by the strike are Alta Bates Summit Medical Center with hospitals in Berkeley and Oakland, Mills-Peninsula Health Services in Burlingame and San Mateo, California Pacific Medical Center and St. Luke's Hospital in San Francisco, Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley, San Leandro Hospital, Sutter Delta in Antioch, Sutter Solano in Vallejo, Sutter Medical Center of Santa Rosa, Sutter Marin General Hospital in Greenbrae, and Sutter Novato.
RNs at two Fremont-Rideout Health Group hospitals, Fremont Medical Center in Yuba City and Rideout Memorial Hospital in Marysville are also on strike.
The strike will run until 7 a.m. on Friday, October 12. At some of the hospitals, management has threatened to prolong the dispute with a lockout of nurses for up to an additional three days after the strike ends.
Picketing begins at all 15 hospitals at 7 a.m.
Rallies will be held today from 12 noon to 1 p.m. at the following sites:
* Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Berkeley campus - 2450 Ashby Ave.,
* Eden Medical Center - 20103 Lake Chabot Rd., Castro Valley
* Mills-Peninsula Health Services, Peninsula campus - 1501 Trousdale Dr.,
* Rideout Memorial Hospital - 726 4th St., Marysville
* St. Luke's Hospital - 3555 Cesar Chavez St., San Francisco
* Sutter Delta Medical Center - 3901 Lone Tree Way, Antioch
* Sutter Medical Center of Santa Rosa, main campus - 3325 Chanate Rd.,
|SOURCE California Nurses Association|
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