BOSTON (CBS) – About 2,500 nurses at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston have voted to stage a one-day strike later this month.
The hospital said the nurses’ union vote late Monday night came after 19 contract negotiation sessions in the last 9 months.
The main issues include compensation, health benefits, paid time off, staffing levels and security.
“The leadership team and the entire BWH community have the utmost respect for our nurses and the incredible care they deliver each day,” Ron Walls, MD, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Brigham and Women’s Health Care, said in a statement.
“The fact that our nurses are among the highest paid locally, regionally, and nationally speaks to how much we value them.“
But the union’s chairperson Trish Powers said they deserve a better offer.
“We are prepared to strike unless Partners and Brigham and Women’s Hospital come back and offer us a fair contract. So we voted today to restore the Brigham way of nursing excellence and safe patient care and that’s why we’re here,” Powers told WBZ-TV.
The union has to give the hospital 10 days notice before they can go on strike. Notice was given Tuesday that the walkout will begin June 27 at 7 a.m.
Brigham and Women’s said if the nurses strike, they will be locked out for five days, “to ensure smooth transitions and the safe and effective care of each patient.”
The hospital claims it’s prepared to bring in 700 nurses to provide care during that time.