As the union representing Sharp Healthcare nurses prepares to strike Monday, hospital officials announced that they will be prepared with replacements, and will welcome nurses who don’t strike.
“Many nurses have expressed appreciation for the generous wage increases Sharp has offered, and they are showing their commitment by planning not to honor the strike and be at work on Monday,” Dan Gross, Sharp Healthcare’s executive vice president, said Friday night. “For these nurses, patients come first.”
Friday’s daylong negotiation session failed to reach an agreement and union officials declined Sharp’s offer to continue negotiating through the weekend.
“Sharp has not addressed in a meaningful way any of the nurses’ core issues,” said Jeff Rogers, a communications specialist for the United Nurses Associations of California/Union of Health Care professionals, which represents the nurses.
Focus of the negotiations pivoted Friday to whether or not Sharp nurses should be compelled to join the union, or be fired for not paying union dues.
“Paying union dues should be an issue of individual freedom and choice, not an organizational mandate,” Gross said.
“By putting their fervent desire for a closed shop, and the revenue additional union dues would generate, over and above being at the bedside for patients, SPNN/UNAC is making a powerful statement about what matters most to them.”
The nurses intend to return to work Thursday. The union delivered the required 10-day notice to the hospital chain’s management on Nov. 17, a week after 98 percent of around 2,200 Sharp nurses who cast ballots rejected the company’s latest bargaining offer.
— City News Service
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