February 07, 2014

Springfield Republican: Baystate Franklin Medical Center, nurses union reach settlement

February 7, 2014

NORTHAMPTON, MA - The nurses union and the administration at Baystate Franklin Medical Center in Greenfield have apparently reached a settlement in their lengthy contract dispute.

Terms of the settlement were to be announced this afternoon during a press conference at the Hotel Northampton in Northampton. Prior to the start of the press conference, officials with the Massachusetts Nurses Association, representing the nurses, distributed a press release announcing the settlement.

The Republican's Jim Kinney is on hand for the press conference and will file a report once it is concluded.

In the meantime, here is the release drafted by the Massachusetts Nurses Union:

GREENFIELD, Mass - The registered nurses of Baystate Franklin Medical Center (BFMC) have reached a tentative agreement on a new five-year contract, averting a one-day strike that was planned for Monday, Feb. 10. The pact provides protections the nurses had sought to prevent the use of mandatory overtime as an alternative to providing safe staffing at the hospital. It also includes improvements to the nurses' health insurance benefit and will grant the nurses pay raises.
The settlement was reached during negotiations held Thursday and Friday.

"We are thrilled to have finally reached an agreement that will provide the protections we need to ensure our patients receive the care they have come to expect from the nurses at Baystate Franklin Medical Center," said Linda Judd, a longtime nurse at the hospital and co-chair of the Massachusetts Nurses Association/National Nurses United local bargaining unit at BFMC. "This is an agreement where everybody wins: our patients, our nurses, our employer and our community"

Judd was quick to acknowledge all the support the nurses received from the communities throughout Franklin County in reaching this hard-fought victory that stretched over more than two years and 44 negotiating sessions.

"In reaching this settlement it is important to recognize all those in our community, including thousands of individual residents, as well as local public officials, who stood with the nurses through this long struggle. We also want to thank State Senator Stanley Rosenberg for hosting these negotiations over the last two days, with a special thanks to Senator Elizabeth Warren and Congressman James McGovern, who spearheaded the effort to get the parties together this week, and without whom we would not have achieved this resolution."

Read the full story here.