FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Ann Sincox; (517) 256-2312
RNs across Northern Michigan say that Munson’s retirement and health insurance offer won’t attract and retain caregivers, could lead to short staffing affecting patient care
(Manistee, MI) This evening members of the Michigan Nurses Association (MNA) and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) held an informational picket outside of Munson Manistee Hospital.
Like other nurses throughout the Munson Medical Care system, Manistee nurses are calling for a fair contract that will ensure safe RN staffing levels for patients. Part of ensuring safe staffing is ensuring competitive wages and benefits for skilled registered nurses and healthcare workers in the region.
“Munson has made $178 million in profits since 2013, yet administrators are asking Manistee nurses and healthcare workers to accept cuts to our retirement and healthcare benefits,” said Kari Zoscsak, RN, and President of the nurses’ union at Munson Manistee. “Requesting cuts is shortsighted and could jeopardize care.”
“My coworkers and I came down from Traverse City today because we face many similar issues at our hospital,” said Dagmar Cunningham, RN. “According to the data that administrators report to CMS, Munson pays some of the lowest wages in the state – Munson Manistee is 56th out of 72 reporting hospitals. My hospital, Munson Medical Center, is 63rd. And that is a problem for patients, because it encourages RNs to leave our communities.”
“Benefits cuts are unnecessary and will make it harder to hire experienced caregivers in Northern Michigan,” said Kristina Protasiewicz. “I hope that managers respond to this picket by bargaining a fair contract that addresses our concerns.”
The Michigan Nurses Association is the largest and most effective labor organization for nurses in the state, representing RNs at Munson Manistee Hospital and Munson Medical Center in Traverse City.