Nurses won improved staffing with ratios, expediated staffing enforcement language, significant wage increases, and more
Contract ratification vote will take place on Tuesday
Port Jefferson, N.Y. – New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) nurses at St. Charles Hospital, part of Catholic Health Services, reached a tentative agreement with the hospital late Saturday night. The nurses’ contract expired on March 31, 2023, and nurses have been negotiating for improvements to staffing and nurse recruitment and retention efforts through better wages and benefits.
The tentative agreement took place after 99.6% of nurses voted to authorize a strike on June 1 and delivered a strike notice on Friday evening after a full day of bargaining. Negotiations continued all day Saturday and ended in a tentative agreement.
The new tentative agreement includes significant gains for nurses, such as set nurse-to-patient staffing ratios to improve patient safety, expedited staffing enforcement language, an average wage increase of 20.5% over the course of the three-year contract. Other contract highlights include Juneteenth and Martin Luther King Jr. Day as premium holiday, improved retiree health benefits, increased education benefits, float incentive pay, and more.
The contract ratification vote will take place on Tuesday, June 6.
NYSNA President at St. Charles, Rob Barone, RN, said: “From the beginning, we made it clear this was a fight for patient safety. This agreement will not only improve staffing ratios, it will empower nurses to enforce safe staffing for our patients and provide us with the respectful wages and benefits we deserve. I’m proud of our committee and St. Charles nurses for fighting for and winning a contract that will ensure quality care for our patients and our community.”
“NYSNA nurses on the bargaining committee and hospital administration worked through the weekend to arrive at an agreement that will ensure quality patient care at St. Charles,” said Kim Bowman, RN. “Our fight was always about the health of our Port Jefferson community and now we can proudly return to the bedside knowing we achieved a victory for nurses and for our patients.”
NYSNA President Nancy Hagans, RN, BSN, CCRN said: “Long Island nurses are on a roll! I’m extremely proud of St. Charles nurses for standing firm in their goal of obtaining a contract that improves staffing standards for patients. Their victory is well deserved and will improve standards of care for patients as well as working conditions for nurses.”
The New York State Nurses Association represents more than 42,000 members in New York State. We are New York’s largest union and professional association for registered nurses. NYSNA is an affiliate of National Nurses United, AFL-CIO, the country's largest and fastest-growing union and professional association of registered nurses, with more than 225,000 members nationwide.
For more information, visit nysna.org.