On December 1, 2010, NNU’s affiliate, the Michigan Nurses Association (MNA) ratified a new collective bargaining agreement with Sparrow Hospital in Lansing calling for penalties of up to $1,200 in cases where the Hospital fails to rectify a staffing shortage. The Union claims that this new staffing language is “second to none.”
Economic terms of the settlement were not as robust with pay increases limited to 1.5% for each year of the three year agreement. In addition, health benefit costs will increase, although only to 8% on January 1, 2011. The union claims these costs are still less than other employee groups have had to pay.
The parties’ last contract expired in October. Operating without a contract, MNA called for a strike which was scheduled for November 22. This strike was averted on November 19th, when the Hospital and Union reached a tentative deal on a new contract.