Nurses Continue Call For Negotiation As Strike Enters Day 3

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – On day three of their walkout, Minnesota nurses are taking their case for a contract to the Allina Board of Directors.

More than 4,000 nurses are walking the picket line at five Allina hospitals across the Twin Cities. On Wednesday, the Minnesota Nurses Association is asking the Allina Board of Directors to contact them directly, to hear their side.

“We honestly thought we had an agreement last Saturday morning, it was heartbreaking to see it,” nurse Angela Becchetti said.

A 22-hour marathon negotiation session came to a close without a contract. Since then, nurses have been on the picket line asking for new talks with Allina Health’s bargaining team.

With no new talks scheduled, striking nurses are turning their attention to Allina’s Board of Directors.

“The Allina Board of Directors — we haven’t seen them. They need to come and listen to us,” Becchetti said. “We want them to listen to our concerns on safety and staffing we want them to know how negotiations have been.”

Minnesota nurses have asked for time on the agenda of the boards next meeting.

“Whatever we can do to help the community. We’re here, we’re on strike, call us,” nurse Jen Stoneman said.

While they wait, nurses are reaching out to help their neighbors, and people are responding.

“Some teacher who is going back to school says her house is dirty, can you help us out? We’ve gotten some older ladies women who need some help once a week,” Stoneman said.

Striking nurses are also putting together blood and food drives as well as giving to the less fortunate.

“We’re donating to the Harriet Tubman Shelter. We”re collecting clothes for the mental health people at Abbott Northwestern,” Stoneman said.

Stoneman says each nurse is in a different place financially. While some can volunteer, others have to find work.

“The Ryder Cup, Paisley park is hiring for tours there, Amazon is out there,” Stoneman said.

Nurses are not paid while on strike. There is a strike fund, but it is for emergency needs only.

Right now, no new talks are scheduled. Replacement workers are in place at all Allina Hospitals.

More from Reg Chapman
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