HAMMONTON and DEPTFORD, N.J., Jan. 23 In an effort to keep patient care a priority, some 100 Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses are set to participate in an unfair labor practice strike at Innova Deptford and Innova Hammonton scheduled to begin at 6 a.m. on Friday January 23.
The nurses, members of District 1199C of The National Union of Hospital and Health Care Employees AFSCME, AFL-CIO, have been working without a contract since last April. Although negotiations have been underway since last March, the employer, Innova, has not been bargaining with a goal of reaching an agreement. As a result the union will be filing a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board and alleging unfair labor practices.
In addition to work- policy changes that would cut some nurses' pay by one-third, the company seeks to change the nurses' healthcare and pension package so that the employees' co-pay would be dramatically and prohibitively increased. Finally, the company is proposing new work conditions that illustrate Innova is not making patient-care a top priority.
District 1199C President Henry Nicholas said, "It is unfortunate that at a critical time in the healthcare industry the employers wish to put their personal investment above quality patient care. This is the same kind of attitude and behavior that has placed the nation in this economic crisis."
SOURCE District 1199C of the National Union of Hospital and Healthcare Employees AFSCME, AFL-CIO