LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – A contract that covers 2,000 Sparrow nurses is set to expire at midnight Monday, but negotiations are still underway.
6 News talked to union officials and Sparrow hospital Monday, and as of 5 p.m. there was still no deal agreed upon.
But what happens if the contract expires and they are still at the table?
Well, there are a few things:
One option is the parties agree to extend negotiations without a new contract until an agreement is reached.
They could also extend the current contract while negotiations continue.
The nurses’ union could also ask its members to “authorize” a strike, which would allow them to issue a 10 day notice of a strike at anytime.
Union officials have already said they will not agree to more requirements for part-time nurses to be eligible for life and health insurance benefits, or to taking health, dental and vision insurance out of the contract all together.
They have also said no to a proposal to change all salaried employees to hourly workers..
Here’s a statement sent to 6 News about negotiations from the union:
“Sparrow’s decision to let our contract expire doesn’t affect our commitment to continue providing quality care for every patient. We remain committed to negotiating a fair contract that puts patients first and enables us as Sparrow nurses and other healthcare professionals to provide the best care possible to our community. Sparrow shouldn’t expect, though, that nurses and other healthcare professionals will agree to a contract that cuts our own healthcare coverage and fails to ensure patient and staff safety.”
Sparrow officials said they have worked to avoid a strike, but had no further comment on negotiations.
This is a developing story. Make sure to stay with 6 News for updates.