LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Sparrow Hospital and nurses union Professional Employees Council of Sparrow Hospital (PECSH)-Michigan Nurses Association (MNA), which represents 2,500 Sparrow employees, have begun negotiations on Tuesday.
The two organizations’ previous contract was created in 2017 and ends in October 2021. The agreement was originally set to expire in 2020, but was extended due to the pandemic.
“We recognize the important role our caregivers play in making Sparrow the region’s leading hospital,” said Amy Brown, Chief Nursing Officer at Sparrow Hospital in a press release. “We are so grateful for all they do to ensure patients’ safety and to provide them with the highest quality of care. Supporting our caregivers is one of our top priorities, which means providing them with a safe, secure and fully staffed workplace. We proudly offer some of the best pay and benefits in the state and we are committed to keeping it that way.”
Tuesday’s meeting was the first of 19 in-person negotiating sessions scheduled between August and October, at which seven representatives from Sparrow Hospital and 13 PECSH-MNA representatives will negotiate the new agreement, Sparrow said in the release.
“I am proud to have been elected by PECSH-MNA Caregivers to serve as a member on our union’s bargaining team and look forward to presenting the concerns and ideas of frontline workers to management. I hope that that Sparrow’s administration will keep their word and truly prioritize safe staffing and retention. During a year when we reached 100% capacity and at times had hundreds of open positions, I hope that we can all agree that Sparrow’s current staffing situation is not sustainable. We hope to be able to collaboratively come up with real solutions through the negotiations process.” said Katie Pontifex, RN at Sparrow Hospital and Vice President of PECSH-MNA