Hospital must post signs asserting nurses’ rights
(Traverse City, MI) Munson Medical Center has been forced to post signs in the hospital and on the hospital’s intranet stating nurses have a right to talk about their working conditions as part of the settlement the hospital entered into with the National Labor Relations Board. A copy of this notice was also emailed to all nurses at Munson Medical Center.
“This settlement forced the administration at Munson to acknowledge our right to talk about our working conditions that could affect patients,” said Carolyn Moss, RN and president of the Traverse City Munson Nurses Association (TCMNA), the local MNA affiliate. “We will continue to be fearless advocates for our patients.”
The Michigan Nurses Association (MNA) filed a charge with the National Labor Relations Board after a Munson nurse was threatened with discipline for talking about the impact of working excessive hours. The Board found the charge to have merit.
The nurses at Munson Medical Center ratified a first contract in March. It was the largest successful organizing effort in the state since Michigan went “Right to Work” in 2013. At the time, nurses were hoping to turn over a new leaf with the administration and the pending ULPs were resolved as a gesture of goodwill by the nurses. Now, nurses say, they are deeply disappointed by Munson’s continued hostility towards their union.
“We want to work with the administration as partners in advocating for safe patient care,” said Jason Judd, RN and Vice President of TCMNA. “However, if the administration keeps trying to silence nurses’ voices, we will keep challenging them. We will only get louder.”
The settlement posting comes after Heather Ruck, an operating room nurse, was told by her manager not to discuss her concerns about the potential impact of nurses’ increasing workloads.
“I am excited because this settlement makes Munson recognize our rights as RNs to raise concerns,” said Ruck. “We aren’t going to back down or be scared when it comes to talking about what is best for our patients.”
The Michigan Nurses Association (MNA) is the largest, most effective union for registered nurses in Michigan, advocating for nurses and their patients at the State Capitol, in the community, and at the bargaining table.
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Contact: Amelia Dornbush, 517-896-7478