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Wilkes-Barre nurses rally for new contract agreement


AUGUST 2010 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Wilkes-Barre nurses rally for new contract agreement


REGION, July 29th- The Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Professionals (PASNAP) Union, which represents nurses employed at the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital on North River Street in Wilkes-Barre, conducted a rally and picnic on July 17th to show solidarity in their attempt to gain a new contract with the employer.

PASNAP, Conshohocken Pennsylvania, represents approximately 440 nurses employed at the medical center. The Union also represents nurses employed at the Community Medical Center (CMC) on Mulberry Street in Scranton.

PASNAP and Community Health Systems (CHS) Inc., which operates the medical center, have been negotiating for more than fourteen months attempting to gain a successor contract agreement. The previous pact expired on August 30th, 2009. The two sides agreed to work under the terms and conditions of the previous contract while negotiations continue for a new pact.

The Tennessee based CHS Inc. is the largest owner of for-profit hospitals in the United States.

The rally included other members of the labor community picketing the hospital and holding a solidarity picnic.

The Union filed multiple labor complaints with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Region Four in Philadelphia in the spring however the Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) charges were dismissed by the agency ruling the complaints lacked merit.

The union filed a ULP charge on March 11, 2010 alleging CHS Inc. was negotiating in bad faith and violated the NLRAct. On May 14th, the union filed another ULP charge alleging the Employer has withdrawn its agreement to specific bargaining proposals and has done so because of ULP’s filed by the Union.

On July 15th, 2010 the Union filed another ULP alleging the Employer violated the NLRAct.

“Since on or about May 10th, 2010, and at various times thereafter, the above-named Employer, by its officers, agents and representatives has failed to bargain collectively and in good faith with the Charging Party,” the ULP states.

The Union also alleges in the complaint that the President of the Wyoming Valley Nurses Association/PASNAP, Alex Rendina, has been discriminated against because they have denied Mr. Rendina reinstatement to his position, after they were ordered by an arbitration award to do so.

“Moreover, since or about July 8th, 2010 and continuing thereafter, the above-named Employer, by its officers, agents and representatives, has brought a baseless lawsuit in bad faith, seeking to overturn the June 9th, 2010 labor arbitration award reinstating Alex Rendina to his position,” states the complaint.

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