From Monday morning, Allina nurses will begin their strike. They promised it will last until Allina Health officials will agree with their plans. The officials said they are prepared for the strike and found people who will replace the nurses during this period. The five hospitals that will be affected are Abbott Northwestern, Phillips Eye Institute, United in St. Paul, Unity in Fridley and Mercy in Coon Rapids.
Although the nurse and Allina Health spent hours negotiating on Friday, they could not come to an agreement on the issues that nurses have. There was a news conference on Sunday and the officials said the hospitals are able to do their activities. There will be 1500 temporary nurses. Moreover, 350 nurses agreed to work even though they should be on strike.
The manager of the Allina Health said that he is sorry because nobody wins in a strike. The most important people are the patients. However, he thinks that the union has chosen its path and Allina has to focus on the needs of the patients. It is for the first time when nurses decide to have a second strike in a short period of time.
The first strike was in June and lasted one week. We will see how long it will take before nurses will return to their jobs. They seem more determined than ever to be on strike as they think their rights were not respected.
The main problem nurses have is health insurance. Allina Health tried to save money by changing the union health plans to one that cover all the employees of the company. Although this means Allina nurses would pay less, they will have more expenses. The nurses did not agree with this because they think they are at higher risk of injuries or illness because of their jobs. The company tried to offer them another option, which was to keep their two most important plans. The union thinks that would be not right for them and that is why the negotiation did not have any results.
Who do think is right regarding this matter? Allina nurses do not seem to give up on their strike, while the officials already found replacements for them. This strike costs the officials more than 20 million dollars and it affects the patients. We are hoping that they will come to an agreement and the problem will be solved.
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