McLaren Lapeer nurses to hold strike authorization vote

Lapeer, MI – RNs at McLaren Lapeer Region Hospital held an informational picket to call for a fair contract that puts patients earlier today. Over 100 people were in attendance. Nurses announced at the rally that they will be holding a strike authorization vote on May 30 and 31.

“As nurses, we are exhausted by the conduct of McLaren executives. What we have experienced is nothing short of a moral injury,” said Carie Babcock, RN, and president of the Michigan Nurses Association’s local at McLaren Lapeer hospital. “However, we are also hopeful. We believe that our unity and our solidarity is strong enough to be able to take on this corporation and change their behavior. We believe that it’s possible to win a better future for all of us.”

“We are the only Level 2 trauma hospital for the Thumb,” said Chuck Johnson, RN. “We care deeply about the community we serve. We are concerned about the future of patient care and are speaking out. McLaren’s CEO has continued to make millions while too many of my colleagues have left because our working conditions are unsustainable. Something must change.”

Nurses are frustrated by what they describe as a failure by their employer to abide by the minimum nurse-to-patient ratios in their previous contract, which expired on May 9. There is currently no state or federal law that limits the number of patients a nurse can be assigned at a time.

“As workers, we are currently the only people able to hold healthcare executives accountable. McLaren’s administration has failed to make sure that we have enough nurses on every shift,” said Nicole Wiegele, RN. “Nurses are prepared to do what it takes to make sure that our patients are kept safe and to protect our community.”

Nurses are advocating for strengthened contractual language to better hold McLaren executives accountable to abiding by safe nurse-to-patient ratios and a fair compensation package. Negotiations for a new contract began in March. The next scheduled date for negotiations is May 25.

Approximately 250 nurses work at McLaren Lapeer hospital.

Photos and videos can be accessed on MNA’s Facebook page. High resolution images are also available upon request. 

The Michigan Nurses Association is the largest and most effective union for nurses and healthcare professionals in Michigan, representing approximately 13,000 members across the state. MNA is an affiliate of National Nurses United and the AFL-CIO.

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Contact: Amelia Dornbush, 517-896-7478

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