Minnesota nurses are going strike for three days beginning September 12
According to Thursday’s announcement from the Minnesota Nurses Association, thousands of Minnesota nurses plan to go on strike for three days later this month.
On the first day of the strike, September 12, 15,000 nurses from 16 hospitals in the Twin Cities and Duluth will walk off the job. According to the leaders, this is the largest nursing strike in American history.
Union officials have informed members that they have given the required 10-day notice to the hospitals where they work. The 15,000 nurses in the Twin Cities and Duluth area voted last month to authorise a strike.
“We are called to be caring for patients. To go on strike, that’s just one more moral injury that we have to hold in our hearts because we do it so unwillingly,” Mary Turner, president of the MNA, made these remarks during the strike vote. We don’t want to be so called ‘abandoning our patients,’ but we see our fight as fighting for our patients.”
Since negotiations between nurses and hospital management have dragged on for months, nurses have been on the job without a contract. In the Twin Cities, the lack of a contract began at the end of May, while in the Duluth area, the nurses’ contract ended at the end of June.
Nurses, according to union officials, are overworked, hospitals are understaffed, and patients are overcharged. Registered nurses are asking for a 30 percent pay raise, as well as bonuses for outstanding work, better mental health coverage, and more protections.
Emily Allen, an ICU nurse, claims that since the epidemic, many nurses have either quit their jobs or taken up travel nursing, where their pay is twice as high per hour.
Their “offer” is “barely covering our cost of living,” she stated.
In a statement released this week, Allina Health reported that negotiations had been productive.
“We are disappointed the union is choosing to rush to a strike before exhausting all options, like engaging a mediator in negotiations which they have repeatedly rejected,” Allina Health said. “The union’s premature decision to move forward with a work stoppage is not Allina Health’s desired outcome of our negotiations.”
As with other workers, nurses are demanding better safety measures in the workplace. In Minneapolis, Children’s Minnesota was placed on lockdown earlier this week after another armed robbery. In a battle with a man they say was armed on campus, security officers opened fire on Abbott Northwestern. Luckily, nobody got hurt.
“This is what we are asking for: safety. We are asking for staffing. They go hand in hand,” M Health Fairview mental health nurse Tracy Ducksworth made the following statement. . “I cannot effectively care for you, I cannot keep you safe, if I am not safe. I cannot care for you and keep you alive and keep you healthy if I am not healthy myself.”
About six years ago, nurses in the Twin Cities went on a brutal strike against Allina Health that lasted for forty-four days. Nurses plan to go on strike for three days in an effort to get the attention of hospital administrators, who they believe are ignoring their concerns and continuing to earn multimillion dollar salaries.