November 11, 2014
Nurses Reach Contract Agreement with 3 Hospitals
By RIDGELY OCHS
More than 700 registered nurses have reached a contract agreement with three North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System hospitals after 11 months of negotiations, the union announced Monday.
The New York State Nurses Association agreed to a three-year contract with Franklin, Plainview and Syosset hospitals that includes a 3 percent raise each year.
In addition, nurses will maintain their current level of pension and health benefits and the health system agreed to strengthen the workplace violence prevention program by changes in reporting and protocols to stem possible patient outbursts.
"These contracts enhance our nursing practice and protect our patients and communities," said Leesa John, a registered nurse who has worked at Franklin Hospital in Valley Stream for 10 years.
Union spokeswoman Tara Martin said the contract "makes NYSNA nurses among the best compensated in the North Shore-LIJ system" and sets an example for the region.
NYSNA represents nurses at those three hospitals plus Southside Hospital in Bay Shore and Staten Island University Hospital, both also in the North Shore-LIJ system.
She said the benefits for NYSNA nurses at Franklin, whose contract expired last December, would be retroactive. Contracts for nurses at the other two hospitals had not yet expired, she said.
Terry Lynam, a spokesman for North Shore-LIJ, called the new contract "fair for our nurses, providing them with competitive wages and comprehensive benefits."
He said that 39 percent of the health system's more than 10,000 nurses are union members.