Agreement includes competitive compensation, short-staffing fines
Lapeer, MI – Registered nurses at McLaren Lapeer Region Hospital voted overwhelmingly Thursday to ratify a new 3-year contract that takes effect immediately.
“We’re pleased and proud that our solidarity ultimately produced an agreement that focuses on safe staffing to protect our patients and competitive compensation to attract nurses and keep the ones we have,” said Carie Babcock, RN, a nurse at McLaren Lapeer and the president of their local Michigan Nurses Association (MNA) bargaining unit. “Nurses all want the best for our hospital, and this cutting-edge contract will help us make sure our patients receive the best care possible at all times. This is a big win for our community.”
The contract includes:
- Wage increases of an average of 19 percent across the life of the contract, to help recruit and retain the necessary RNs to provide safe care for patients;
- Hospital fines when administrators fail to meet the contractually agreed-upon nurse-to-patient ratios, to hold executives accountable for safe staffing; and
- Improved staffing for the emergency department, which is especially important because McLaren Lapeer Region is the only Level II Trauma Center in the Thumb area.
Nurses previously voted unanimously to authorize their bargaining team to hold a strike if necessary and held an informational picket with more than 100 people in attendance.
“Nurses have really stuck together to put our patient care priorities first,” said Ashley Kesler, RN, a nurse at McLaren Lapeer. “This new agreement will hold administrators accountable for following the contract when it comes to safe staffing so nurses can focus on meeting our patients’ needs first and foremost. Our goal is not that the hospital pay the short-staffing fines, but rather that hospital executives make safe staffing a real priority, because it can truly be a matter of life and death.”
The Michigan Nurses Association is the largest and most effective union for registered nurses and healthcare professionals in Michigan. MNA is an affiliate of National Nurses United and the AFL-CIO.