I Want a Union

Organize Your Workplace with MNA

By organizing with MNA you’ll be joining together with 22,000 MNA nurses in Minnesota and surrounding states, as well as 250,000 nurses nationwide as part of National Nurses United (NNU). That means you won’t be alone at the bargaining table—instead, you’ll multiply your power, leverage, and support. You’ll also have seasoned members and professional staff at both the local and national level to share their expertise and help you organize and bargain a contract at your facility.   

If you want to learn more about the steps it takes to form a union and make positive improvements in your workplace, contact mnaorganizing@mnnurses.org.

Organizing Takes Time  

Organizing doesn’t happen overnight. Employers, including healthcare organizations, invest big money and lots of effort to keep workers from having a say in their workplaces. That’s why organizing the right way is so important. Organizing takes time, knowledge, and the ability to keep the campaign underground until there is enough deeply and widely felt support.

Shh! Organizing Underground

If you’re interested in organizing, the first thing you need to know is to keep your interest in a union secret from your employer and their management team!

Filing for Election

Once you and your coworkers have built up enough support, you’ll file for an election to certify your unionization drive. For a union election, you and your coworkers will vote to unionize.

What the Boss Will Say

At the point of filing for an election, or sometimes sooner, your manager will find out that you and your coworkers are trying to form a union. They won’t be happy, and they will fight back as hard as they can. This can be scary if you don’t know what to expect, but luckily, the boss is very predictable, and they all use the same playbook to try to discourage your union drive.

“By voting in a union you are just bringing a third party between you and your manager.”

Remember, YOU are the union. You and your co-workers are the ones who have the power and make the decisions. Together, you are the ones who decide what you want, vote for your representatives, negotiate with the employer, and enforce your contract. A union is workers like you, standing together and amplifying your voice and your power.

“Union dues are expensive, and you could spend your money on better things.”

Because the employers we’re up against are powerful organizations with deep pockets and the willingness to spend whatever it takes to keep their power, we must fund our union efforts through dues. You don’t start paying dues until you ratify a contract. Dues for RNs are $79.40 a month, or approximately two hours of pay per month. The dues amount is set by the MNA Board of Directors who are all active members in good standing who have been democratically elected by MNA members.

“You’re going to be forced to go on strike all the time.”

Strikes are the final tool in a union’s toolbox, which makes them very rare. There are many steps and collective actions that union members will take part in prior to even considering a strike. Some of these actions include wearing a union button or t-shirt, presenting a demand petition, informational picketing, and more. To go on strike, it first must be authorized by at least two-thirds of you and your coworkers in a vote, though many unions will not go out on strike without at least 90% support. Strikes also only happen after many months of bargaining for important contract issues that you haven’t gotten yet. Only you and your coworkers will decide whether or not you will go on strike.