Eden Medical Center Lab Technicians Begin Open-Ended Strike
As expected, about 130 pharmacy, laboratory and X-ray lab technicians at Eden Valley Medical Center on Friday began an open-ended strike, the Contra Costa Times reports. The technicians, represented by the local Teamsters union, have asked for a 7% pay raise and improved pension and benefit plans. A union spokesperson said that the strike would continue "until demands are met." Eden technicians went on strike after nurses at the hospital last week received an 18% pay increase over three years. Cassandra Phelps, a hospital spokesperson, said, "The competition for nurses is extremely stiff, and to attract new nurses and to retain the ones we had, we had to offer that package," adding, "If you look at it like a pie, there are only so many pieces of the pie, and at some point there is no more to give." The hospital has offered the technicians a 5% pay raise and the same pension plan offered to the nurses. The lab technicians have sought a selection of pension plans, including the Teamsters plan, the Times reports. The union and the hospital have not scheduled additional contract negotiations (Tate, Contra Costa Times, 8/3).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.