NYC Health + Hospitals/ Mayoral Nurses Win Historic Contract!

On Monday, July 31, NYSNA nurses at NYC Health + Hospitals (H+H)/ Mayorals reached a new contract with the City of New York with pay parity and safe staffing. The contract comes after months of tirelessly mobilizing, speaking out, and bargaining.

The public sector nurses who staff New York City’s public hospitals and mayoral agencies stayed firm in their demands that the city lives up to its agreement on pay parity with the private sector to stop the crisis of high turnover and understaffing.

Highlights of the new contract include:

  • Two years of pay parity wage increases, effective 7/31/23. The awarded payments of $16,006 in year one and $5,551 in year two bring public-sector salaries up to par with NYC private-sector nurse salaries.
  • Salary increases of 3%, 3% and 3.25% in years 3, 4, and 5 of the contract that when combined with parity award total an increase of at least 37% over the life of the contract for all full-time members
  • Improved staffing ratios, and new staffing ratios will be expanded beyond the 11 acute care hospitals into other RN settings.
  • Improved staffing enforcement, including a new staffing subcommittee, and expanded pool of mediators to hear and resolve staffing disputes, and a fact-finding process if the parties fail to reach an agreement on mediation.
  • A new system-wide float pool to improve staffing throughout the hospitals and reduce nurse floating and use of expensive temp travel nurses.

This contract represents the largest wage increase in NYC public sector nurse history and corrects a historic wrong. Since H+H’s pay parity contractual clause was suspended in the 1990s, the wage disparity between public and private-sector nurses in NYC grew to unjust and unsustainable levels. This victory underscores that NYSNA is one strong union, united to win!

Congratulations to NYC H+H/ Mayoral nurses for their persistence throughout this contract campaign and their dedication to their colleagues, patients and community.

Thousands of nurses participated in negotiations, escalated actions across H+H facilities, and participated in town halls, city council hearings, press conferences, rallies, sit-ins, “wear red” days, and social media days of action. Actions were also attended by dozens of community groups, elected officials, and labor allies.

Despite the city’s pushback against parity and cries that the city could not afford it, public sector nurses exposed that the city was already spending far more for temporary travel nurse contracts. Data received by the NYC Comptroller’s office revealed that NYC H+H spent $589.9 million on temp RN staffing in fiscal year 2022, even more than the $549 million previously reported for calendar year 2022. H+H reported spending on temporary RN staffing in fiscal year 2023 was on track to exceed last year’s expenditures after only a few months, with $401.8 million already spent in FY 2023. The inquiry also revealed that the average hourly rate for temp nurses is now $163.50 — nearly 3.5 times what staff nurses make, fringe benefits included.

The New York Daily News also reported that NYC paid $1.2 billion to a for-profit staffing firm called Rightsourcing in fiscal year 2022. Rightsourcing, which is owned by a Swedish private equity firm, subcontracted with temp agencies to fill staffing gaps at H+H/Mayorals – gaps that were largely caused by public sector nurses being paid so much lower than the industry standard.

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