For Immediate Release
Contact: Mark Genovese, 518.782.9400, ext. 353
KINGSTON, Sept. 3, 2008 – The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has set Thursday, Sept. 18, as the date for a union-representation election for registered nurses at Benedictine Hospital.
Benedictine nurses are seeking to join the New York State Nurses Association because they want a unified voice to help them address workplace issues such as insufficient nurse staffing, non-competitive salaries, and lack of incentives to retain experienced nurses.
Last week, hospital management failed in its attempt to prevent the election through challenges before the NLRB.
U.S. Congressman Maurice Hinchey recently sent a letter in support of the nurses’ organizing efforts to hospital CEO Thomas Dee. “The call for unionization should not be viewed by the administration at Benedictine as something counterproductive to hospital goals,” Hinchey wrote. “In fact, unionization of the nursing staff will help to improve policy on an array of issues ranging from working conditions and nurse-to-patient ratios, to the role nurses will play in determining standards of care.”
He added that a union affiliation will help the hospital recruit and retain qualified nurses.
Voting will be conducted in the hospital’s administrative conference room from 6:30 to 9:30 a.m., from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., and from 2:30 to 8 p.m.
The New York State Nurses Association is the voice for nursing in the Empire State. With more than 36,000 members, it is the state's largest union and professional association for registered nurses. It supports nurses and nursing practice through education, research, legislative advocacy, and collective bargaining.