ATLANTIC COUNTY, N.J., Aug. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Nurses at Shore Medical Center in South Jersey spoke with purpose and passion this morning as they announced a strike authorization by an overwhelming majority. The announcement by members of the Shore Nurses Union/NYSNA comes after months of negotiations have gone fruitless. The Shore Medical Center RNs plan to take their fight to advocate for patient care and a fair contract to the community with a LABOR & COMMUNITY RALLY in front of the hospital on TUESDAY, AUGUST 25TH starting at 12:00pm.
"This past week, nurses have voted with a 77% margin to authorize a strike. We now have the ability to issue a 10-day notice to strike if we cannot make progress toward a fair contract," said members of the Shore Nurses Union Executive Committee today. "We spend our days working our shifts, being told to see more patients with less support… basically, we're asked to make miracles happen each and every day. But it's been difficult over the last few years as we've been asked to do more with less. Management proposals will affect this hospital's ability to recruit and retain a skilled nursing workforce, which will in turn have a direct impact on the type of care and safe environment RNs can provide to our patients. Taking away from the nurses ultimately takes away from patients, and that is something we just can't accept!"
The members of the Shore Nurses Union/NYSNA bargaining unit are frustrated by the negotiations that have dragged on for several months. In these sessions, the management of Shore Medical has attempted to dictate terms rather than negotiate over key patient care issues. Management has presented proposals that threaten to destabilize the workforce at the hospital, as Shore Medical Center is currently facing a serious recruitment and retention issue, which – if not addressed – can lead to a severe nursing shortage. These proposals can weaken the hospitals ability to recruit nurses in what will be a highly competitive environment.
"Every nurse and healthcare professional here cares deeply about giving our patients safe and quality care. We want to make sure that when you come to the hospital, you have the best possible care," said Jeanette Martin, Shore Nurses Union Delegate, Float RN, 7 Years as an RN at Shore. "Our nurses believe that we must do things differently in this hospital if we are to provide our patients with the quality care that they so rightfully deserve."
RNs are, also, particularly concerned with the troublesome report issued by Consumer Reports, September 2015, which finds Shore Medical Center to be one of the country's 18 worst hospitals for preventing dangerous bacteria-based infections, citing the hospital specifically for MRSA, C.diff, urinary tract, and central line catheter infections.
Shore nurses are asking that hospital management drop the economic takeaways from their proposals that drive away experienced nurses. Recruitment and retention of highly-trained nurses in Southern New Jersey will become a dire issue if these major economic takeaways are implemented. This will have a direct impact on patient care.
WHAT: A rally in front of Shore Medical Center to advocate for patient care and a fair contract that can help recruit and retain skilled nurses
WHO: Shore Nurses Union/NYSNA registered nurses, healthcare workers, patient advocates, labor allies, elected officials
WHEN: TUESDAY, AUGUST 25TH starting at 12:00pm
WHERE: Main Entrance of Shore Medical Center
100 Medical Center Way, Somers Point
**EXCELLENT PHOTO, AUDIO AND VIDEO OPPORTUNITIES**
Shore Nurses Union Members will be available for media availabilities
The Shore Nurses Union/NYSNA represents more than 37,000 members in New York and New Jersey. For more information, please visit our website at www.nysna.org.
SOURCE Shore Nurses Union/NYSNA