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Nurses picket across metro with contract set to expire next week

May 22, 2019 06:29 PM

Members of the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) are picketing at hospitals across the metro Wednesday over a contract dispute.

The Nurses Association said in a release nurses were targeting Children's Hospital in Minneapolis Wednesday, with the contract between nurses and hospitals set to expire at the end of the month.

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According to the release, negotiators for Children's Hospital are scheduled to bargain with nurse negotiators again on Friday. Methodist, Fairview, Allina, HealthEast and North Memorial hospitals' nurses also have negotiation times set this week, the Nurses Association said.

The Nurses Association also said the picketing wasn't a work stoppage, and said no nurses left their patients or their jobs.

RELATED: Nurses at Twin Cities hospitals make safety a key part of contract talks

A spokesperson for the Twin Cities Hospitals issued the following statement to KSTP:

"Since March, Twin Cities Hospitals have been bargaining with the Minnesota Nurses Association to reach a new collective bargaining agreement that recognizes the registered nurses' important role in patient care, supports a culture of safety in our workplaces, and allows health systems to invest in delivering exceptional care to our communities. We remain hopeful and optimistic that we can reach agreement on a new contract soon. We are committed to ensuring our patients and community have the continuity and quality of care they deserve and depend on from our hospitals."

If nurses and hospitals come to an agreement, that offer will have to be ratified by MNA members in a special vote. Otherwise, after the contract expires, nurses may elect to begin a strike, MNA said.

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