FIRST DAY OF CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS!

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January 13, 2022

 

Today, CRONA started contract negotiations with Stanford and Packard hospitals. Our current labor contracts expire March 31, 2022.

CRONA’s team started the day by presenting proposals that are designed to improve working conditions for Nurses – with the goals of supporting Nurses as they provide world-class patient care, and allowing Nurses to have a sustainable career at the hospitals. We are seeking contracts that will support current Nurses and attract new Nurses to the hospitals.

In presenting our proposals, CRONA emphasized the significant challenges facing Nurses and the hospital right now. For example:

  • 44% of the CRONA Nurses surveyed reported considering leaving the hospitals in the near-future.
  • The ongoing nursing shortage in California that will take many years to resolve.
  • Chronic understaffing in many areas of the hospitals.
  • Increased mental health concerns, burnout, and low morale among Nurses caused by understaffing.

None of these are new problems caused by COVID, but they have gotten worse in the pandemic, which places an extraordinary and additional strain on Nurses and other healthcare workers.

CRONA’s opening noneconomic proposals (so, proposals not addressing wages or benefit) focus on five primary areas

Ensuring safe patient staffing. CRONA is proposing contract language to ensure that the hospitals comply with state law requirements for classifying patients according to acuity and staffing needs, and have shift-by-shift plans that comply with that system and ensure that safe staffing is maintained during meal and rest breaks. CRONA’s proposals also provide solutions to persistent understaffing in units and areas, including increased access to short notice call compensation and development of hiring plans for problem areas.

Making nursing work sustainable. CRONA is seeking a number of changes to ensure that Nurses are supported in their careers. These include increasing the number of weeks that Nurses may preschedule vacation and allowing Nurses to take some unpaid leave if they do not have sufficient PTO for pre-approved vacations; improving access to mental health and wellness support services; increasing the number of weekends off; not penalizing Nurses who miss work due to infections or

exposures that prevent them from working; and allowing Nurses to take mandatory courses within their commitments and remotely when appropriate.

Supporting diversity, equity and inclusion. CRONA is calling for managers to be trained on how to create equitable and inclusive work environments, including training on de-escalation of conflicts.

Preventing workplace violence. CRONA is proposing that the hospitals expand their in-person trainings on workplace violence prevention. CRONA also wants the hospitals to take responsibility for employee safety in parking areas and on shuttles.

Promoting transparency. CRONA made several proposals designed to increase transparency, including improved information regarding posted schedules, vacancies, and use of traveler nurses.

CRONA’s proposals are informed by thousands of responses you provided to the negotiations survey and the issues you identified as priorities. Your CRONA Negotiations team specifically designed these proposals to respond to the real and significant challenges facing us.

The hospitals also presented their opening noneconomic proposals. As CRONA expressed at the table, we were troubled that some of hospitals’ proposals undermine or eliminate previously negotiated contract protections that improved sustainability of nursing work. CRONA called on the hospitals to take the current challenges seriously and to engage with CRONA on how to ensure that Nurses facing burnout, trauma, and exhaustion do not simply leave the workplace.

Negotiations will continue over the next three months and CRONA looks forward to making real progress and improving working conditions for all Nurses.


Want to get involved? 
Send us a message to let us know! We will have more events to share information and spread the word about our proposals. Every CRONA Nurse should be informed about our contract negotiations!

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