St. Vincent Hospital nurses who have been striking for eight weeks reported a "positive step" in negotiations with the hospital management team, the first sign that the two sides are possibly nearing a finish line for a new contract. St. Vincent nurses and Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare on Saturday held the second round of negotiations since the Worcester nurses launched their strike on March 8. The nurses, who are with the Massachusetts Nurses Association, reported that Tenet made a proposal that "opens the door to a substantive discussion on the nurses' main issue, which is the need for safer staffing levels to ensure safer patient care." "The nurses negotiating committee will take the next few days to meet and carefully evaluate the hospital's proposal," the Massachusetts Nurses Association said in a statement, adding they will return to the bargaining table on Wednesday with a "comprehensive response on what nurses need to settle the contract and end the strike." The nurses said they won't discuss the specifics of the hospital proposal, but "see it as a positive step in the process."
St. Vincent Hospital nurses and the hospital's management were unable to strike a deal Monday after the two sides returned to the bargaining table for the first time since the Worcester nurses started walking the picket line 50 days ago. The 800 nurses have been on strike since March 8 as they continue to battle Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare over better staffing measures. A federal mediator scheduled the new round of negotiations on Monday as Tenet presented an "adjustment" to its most recent proposal, Saint Vincent Hospital CEO Carolyn Jackson said on Sunday before negotiations. But the nurses, who are with the Massachusetts Nurses Association, reviewed the hospital's proposal with the membership via Zoom -- and the members "voiced strong opposition," the MNA said after the session on Monday. "The strike will continue," the MNA said in a statement.
Nurses at St. Vincent's Hospital in Worcester walked off the job this morning, staging a strike over a stand-off in contract negotiations with hospital owner, Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare. "This is a strike for the safety of our patients and our community" said Marlena Pellegrino, RN, co-chair of the local bargaining unit of the Massachusetts Nurses Association. "We are sad to see that Tenet holds so little value for our patients, yet we are resolved to do whatever it takes for as long as it take to protect our patients, as it is safer to strike now than allow Tenet to continue endangering our patients every day on every shift. As we begin our a strike, we are always ready to get back to the table to negotiate whenever Tenet is ready do the same." St. Vincent's Hospital arranged to bring in replacement workers as the potential strike loomed.
Just days ahead of a planned strike, nurses at St. Vincent Hospital and its owner Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare remain locked in a standoff over contract negotiations that now has the Worcester hospital preparing to bring in replacements. After the hospital on Monday made an offer to increase some staffing levels and pay, the nurses and management returned to the negotiating table on Wednesday. The 800 nurses represented by the Massachusetts Nurses Association presented a counterproposal to boost staffing levels higher, but the sides did not reach an agreement. A strike is set to start at 6 a.m. Monday unless a deal can be reached before then.
St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester says it's offering increased staffing and extended contract terms to the Massachusetts Nurses Association ahead of a planned nurses strike. The hospital officials presented the offer during Monday night's negotiating session. This comes after the group of 800 nurses last week delivered a strike notice to hospital management, saying they're ready to go on strike starting March 8 amid the contract fight with Dallas-based Tenet Health Care. The fight over the new contract is centered on staffing issues and patient care conditions. "This offer represents a good faith effort to resolve the issues and reach an agreement," Carolyn Jackson, Saint Vincent CEO, said in a statement. "It is an improvement of our existing, contracted staffing levels, which are already considered among the best of all Massachusetts hospitals, and keeps the competitive wage increases and bonus we had offered previously.