About 400 Nurses and Community Supporters Rally for a Fair Contract with Munson Medical Center

Contact: Sara Wallenfang; 517-974-4966

RNs call for safe staffing levels, wages, and benefits to attract and retain skilled nurses

(Traverse City, MI) Today, hundreds of Munson Medical Center nurses and community supporters rallied in Traverse City, calling for a fair nursing contract that will support the highest quality of patient care.

“Munson Medical Center nurses are our neighbors and our friends. They play a vital role in supporting healthy lives throughout our region,” said Jim Carruthers, Mayor of Traverse City. “RNs deserve a contract that will keep up with the rising cost of living in our desirable resort-based community. Nurses who serve Traverse City should be able to afford to live here.”

Nurses are currently negotiating their first union contract at Munson Medical Center and urge the hospital to bargain an agreement that will fully support their patients and their profession. RNs seek safe staffing levels to ensure quality care, as well as wages and benefits that will help retain and recruit nurses to serve in northern Michigan.

“We are thankful to have so many community supporters rallying with us,” said Nikia Parker, Munson Medical Center RN. “A timely contract that is fair to nurses will help us take better care of patients. It is a win for everyone.”

“Both here in Traverse City and Manistee, Munson managers don’t seem to feel an appropriate sense of urgency. They need to do more to reach an agreement with nurses,” said Kristina Protasiewicz, RN and bargaining team member at Munson Healthcare Manistee, where the nursing contract is also currently being negotiated. “RNs from both facilities stand united as patient advocates.”

“Our hospital is currently ranked seventh in the state by U.S. News and World Report. Nurses are asking for a contract that will continue to put patients first,” said Jennifer Ross, Munson Medical Center RN. “We want to ensure that safe RN staffing levels are part of our new collective bargaining agreement for the good of each and every patient.”

Decades of well-established research that proves that when a nurse is forced to care for too many people at once, it can lead to medication errors, falls, and increased infection rates, and even patient deaths.

Munson Medical Center nurses recently filed Unfair Labor Practice charges against the hospital for failing to bargain in good faith. More information is available at: https://www.minurses.org/news/nurses-bolstered-by-community-support-say-munson-medical-center-fails-to-negotiate-in-good-faith/

A radio ad and a community petition in support of nurses can be found at: www.munsonnurses.org

Munson Medical Center nurses are affiliated with the Michigan Nurses Association (MNA). MNA is the largest, most effective union for registered nurses in Michigan, advocating for nurses and their patients at the State Capitol, in the community, and at the bargaining table.


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