California Nurses End Strike; Some Face Lockouts by Hospitals
Most of the 5,000 members of the California Nurses Association who staged a two-day strike at 15 Northern California hospitals will return to work on Friday, while the remaining nurses will be locked out at five hospitals for one to three days, the Contra Costa Times reports (Kleffman, Contra Costa Times, 10/12).
The strike occurred at hospitals affiliated with Sutter Health and the Fremont-Rideout Health Group (Hogarth, East Bay Business Times, 10/12).
The hospitals that are locking out nurses signed contracts with replacement staff to maintain services during the strike.
CNA on Thursday filed a complaint with the Department of Public Health alleging that the hospitals have not independently verified the competence of replacement workers (Kleffman, Contra Costa Times, 10/12).
The strike likely will cost hospitals hundreds of thousands of dollars from hiring replacement workers, advertising and legal advice, according to the Business Times (East Bay Business Times, 10/12).
Contract negotiations began in April, but nurses and hospitals have been unable to reach a compromise on staffing levels, patient-care practices and retirement benefits, among other issues.
Nine hospitals in the Sutter network are negotiating individual contracts with CNA (California Healthline, 10/11).
Sutter officials said the strike was intended to force a master contract with all nine hospitals and gain contract language that accommodates organizing efforts for new members (Raine, San Francisco Chronicle, 10/12).
Some hospital officials said they are willing to return to the bargaining table but have not received a response from the union (Contra Costa Times, 10/12).