Nurses to hold first-ever picket at Hennepin Healthcare over retention, management inaction  

MEDIA ADVISORY

Contact: Sam Fettig
(c) 612-741-0662
sam.fettig@mnnurses.org
Lauren Nielsen
(c) 651-376-9709
lauren.nielsen@mnnurses.org

Hennepin nurses are currently in wage reopener negotiations with the county health system, seeking fair wages competitive with other metro-area hospitals

(St. Paul) – August 17, 2022 – Nurses with the Minnesota Nurses Association at Hennepin Healthcare today announced their intent to picket on Monday, August 22, 2022, outside of the hospital. The first-ever picket by MNA nurses at Hennepin County Medical Center comes as nurses have raised concerns to Hennepin leadership over retention and under-staffing which have gone unaddressed by hospital executives.

“For the longest time, hospital administrators have been crying false tears over the supposed nursing shortage that they themselves created,” said Jeremy Olson-Ehlert, RN, an MNA Chair at Hennepin Healthcare. “Our Hennepin County Medical Center nurses are some of the most wonderful nurses I have ever worked with. But we are tired. We need help from executive management, and the call is not being answered. There is no nursing shortage, but a shortage of nurses willing to put up with the conditions and consequences of poor staffing and violence against healthcare staff.”

Just last week, nurses at Hennepin Healthcare raised the alarm about rising levels of violence against nurses and other patients which they say have gone unaddressed by hospital executives and management. One of the top solutions sought by nurses is to increase staffing levels so there are enough nurses to provide quality care in a safe environment. With Monday’s picket, nurses will call on hospital executives to step up and address the deteriorating conditions nurses face on the job so they can stay at the bedside, doing what they love, to provide exceptional care to Minnesotans.

“The staffing crisis in our hospital is not new, it has been steadily worsening over the last two years. Nurses have been pleading with executives to listen to our suggestions to retain our highly skilled nursing staff, but we have seen no clear action from leadership,” said Janell Thiele, RN at Hennepin Healthcare. “The way an organization values and empowers nurses to be able to provide the highest level of care determines whether a nurse will stay or go. With more job opportunities than ever before, nurses will continue to leave organizations where we do not feel valued and where patients are paying the price.”

The crisis of short staffing and retention continues to worsen at hospitals throughout Minnesota, as one recent study found that half of all nurses now consider leaving the bedside in the next year due to short staffing and moral distress. Along with the impact of short staffing on nurse retention, under staffing was also found to contribute to an increase in adverse events for Minnesota patients in a recent study from the Minnesota Department of Health.

Nurses at Hennepin are currently in wage reopener negotiations with hospital management, seeking fair wages competitive with other metro-area hospitals so Hennepin Healthcare can continue to attract and retain high-quality staff to provide patients the care they expect and deserve. Wage reopener negotiations occur part-way through an existing contract and address wages only.

This informational picket is not a work stoppage; nurses will not be walking off the job to participate in the picket and hospital operations will not be affected by the action.

HENNEPIN NURSES HOLD INFORMATIONAL PICKET

  • When: Monday, August 22, 2022, 7:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m., 2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
  • Where: Hennepin County Medical Center, 730 S 8th St, Minneapolis, MN 55415
  • Who: MNA Nurses at Hennepin Healthcare
  • What: Informational picket amid wage reopener negotiations
  • Why: To call on Hennepin executives to address concerns over retention, management inaction
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2 Comments

  1. In solidarity! The research supports improved nurse to patient ratios means less patient readmissions, less patient deaths, less violence against nurses, and increased retention of nurses.

  2. Funny how the same thing happened at North when a certain CNO ravaged their hospital too. The timing is impeccable

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