Borgess nurses reach tentative agreement with Ascension

The deal comes after RNs had previously passed a strike authorization vote

KALAMAZOO, MI – Nurses at Ascension Borgess Hospital reached a tentative agreement with their hospital’s administration today for a new three-year contract. The agreement, if ratified, would cover over 300 nurses at the hospital.

The agreement was reached after 86% of voting MNA members at Ascension Borgess passed a resolution authorizing their elected bargaining team to have the ability to call for a strike should it be necessary.

“By standing together, we sent a clear message to Ascension that a strong contract that protects patients by recruiting and retaining nurses is vital to our community,” said Lori Batzloff, a nurse at Ascension Borgess and president of the local bargaining unit of the Michigan Nurses Association. “Now it’s time for the membership to review the tentative agreement. I plan to vote in favor of the deal and encourage other nurses to do the same.”

Highlights of the new deal include:

  1. Average raises of 20.5% in year one of the contract, creating a new wage scale ranging from $33.44 to $48.72.
  2. An additional emergency personal day for all RNs to help address the work/life balance challenges many nurses face and help improve retention.
  3. Increasing shift differentials for evening and night shift nurses by $1/hr – a 100% increase for evening nurses, as well as increasing on-call pay to $5/hr to help address staffing concerns.

Following an informational rally by union members in November, Ascension agreed to withdraw their proposals demanding that RNs be required to work every other weekend and eliminating all contractually guaranteed leaves.

Full details of the contract will be made available to the membership in the coming days. A ratification vote will be held next Wednesday, December 14. No additional details will be publicly released until after the membership has first had a chance to review and vote on the tentative agreement. The agreement only becomes final if ratified by the membership.

The Michigan Nurses Association is the largest union and professional association for registered nurses and healthcare professionals in Michigan. MNA is an affiliate of National Nurses United and AFL-CIO.

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Contact: Amelia Dornbush, 517-896-7478

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