FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
15,000 nurses at 16 hospitals in the Twin Cities, Twin Ports, and Two Harbors voted yesterday to authorize an unfair labor practice strike
As many hospital CEOs continue to take multi-million-dollar salaries, executives continue to commit unfair labor practices and refuse solutions to address care and working conditions for nurses and patients
(St. Paul and Duluth) – December 1, 2022 – This morning, nurses with the Minnesota Nurses Association announced that 15,000 nurses throughout the state plan to begin an unfair labor practice strike at 16 hospitals beginning December 11, 2022, as they fight for fair contracts to put patients before profits and to solve the crisis of care and working conditions in our hospitals. The unfair labor practices strike follows nurses’ historic three-day unfair labor practice strike in September, believed to be the largest private-sector nurses’ strike in U.S. history.
Nurses in the Twin Cities and Twin Ports have negotiated for eight months with hospital executives and have worked without contracts since summer. Nurses in the Twin Cities, Twin Ports, and Two Harbors voted overwhelmingly yesterday to authorize the unfair labor practices strike. The strike is scheduled to begin at 7:00am on Sunday, December 11. Nurse leaders with each bargaining unit have chosen their own strike dates; nurses in the Twin Cities and at Essentia plan to strike through 7:00am on Saturday, December 31, 2022, while nurses at St. Luke’s in Duluth and at Lake View in Two Harbors have chosen to strike with no end date set.
“Our hospitals are in crisis, and our CEOs have failed nurses and patients. They have failed to solve the crisis of patient care, and they have failed to solve the crisis of working conditions pushing nurses away from the bedside,” said Mary C. Turner, RN at North Memorial Hospital and President of the Minnesota Nurses Association. “Nurses are fighting to win contracts that will help nurses stay on the job to provide patients with the exceptional care they deserve. Hospital CEOs with million-dollar salaries can afford to put Patients Before Profits in our hospitals and to do right by Minnesota nurses.”
“At the same time hospital CEOs tell nurses and patients there is no money to retain staff and prioritize care, executives are taking million-dollar raises and pursuing corporate expansions that put community access to affordable care at risk,” said Chris Rubesch, RN at Essentia in Duluth and First Vice President of the Minnesota Nurses Association. “Nurses and patients need safe staffing and quality care in our hospitals, not more corporate healthcare policies. We are ready to fight and win fair contracts to hold hospital CEOs accountable to our communities.”
Hospital CEOs continue to take multi-million-dollar salaries while failing to solve the retention crisis pushing nurses out of the profession, negatively impacting care for Minnesota patients. There is no shortage of nurses in Minnesota, but deteriorating care and working conditions are driving more nurses to leave the bedside. While adverse events increase for patients and conditions deteriorate in Minnesota hospitals on the watch of hospital CEOs, more than half of all nurses are considering leaving the bedside in the next year.
If no agreement is reached, nurses will begin their unfair labor practices strike on December 11, 2022, at the following 16 hospitals throughout the state.
Nurses in the Twin Cities have been working without a contract since theirs expired on May 31, 2022; contracts for nurses in the Twin Ports expired on June 30, 2022. Nurses at St. Luke’s Lake View Hospital in Two Harbors have been working without a contract since September.