This Week’s Bargaining Sessions


This Week’s Bargaining Sessions

This week we returned to the bargaining table for two days of negotiations that we had hoped will move us toward a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC) came prepared with several new proposals both days that it hoped would help us reach a fair agreement for nurses and the Medical Center.  That included listening to feedback and making movement on important issues (such as removing proposals for spousal surcharges).  The chart below highlights the significant proposals and responses made at the bargaining table today.

The back-and-forth nature of this process can create confusion about the state of negotiations and what progress has been made at the table. As part of our commitment to full transparency and to make sure that everyone has access to accurate information, a number of important documents have been posted on UCMCNurses.org so you may review them for yourself.

These include:

We know that a contract only happens when both sides compromise, and what you will see in these documents is movement from UCMC on core issues that impact you and your families.

We still have not seen much movement from NNOC/NNU, and it remains unclear why we are moving toward a strike instead of working toward a compromise.  As we have demonstrated this week, the UCMC team’s priority is working with NNOC/NNU representatives to find areas of compromise that will produce the best contract for all sides. It is our hope that both sides can focus all their energy on getting a deal done for you.

Thank you for all that you do for our patients and each other.

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Proposals Made at the Negotiating Table: Sept. 6, 2019

Here are the facts of what NNOC/NNU and UCMC proposed today and the responses:

NNOC/NNU PROPOSALS UCMC PROPOSALS

NNOC Proposal re Seniority for Newly Represented Nurses:  NNOC made its first proposal on seniority for newly represented nurses.  Newly represented nurses would receive some credit for past work at UCMC in newly represented areas.

UCMC Response:  UCMC agreed to look at a Union package proposal on union dues, management rights and other issues with these proposals on the table.

UCMC Proposal for PCSNs:  UCMC countered NNOC’s Thursday proposal to guarantee no weekend work for existing PCSNs and pay a $10 weekend shift differential for new weekend nurses by proposing that existing nurses receive 4 full scheduling periods before they would transition to being scheduled to assist on the weekends as other nurses do.

NNOC Response:  NNOC repeatedly asked if UCMC would make a proposal for ratios or on other staffing issues.  UCMC answered that it did not agree to the Union’s proposed ratios but believed that its proposals could address the Union’s staffing concerns, including by making clear that PCSNs could assist with all nursing duties as well as meal and rest breaks.

NNOC Fourth Economic Proposal:  NNOC responded to UCMC’s proposal on economics but did not make much substantive movement.

  • RNs who work late in procedural areas to assist with patient needs currently receive overtime like other nurses.  NNOC proposed that double time be paid, a reduction from its proposal for triple time for working overtime.
  • NNOC continued to insist that it have a veto over any changes to benefits design. (No movement)
  • NNOC continued to ask for 5.5% wage increases in each year of the contract in addition to step. (No movement)
  • NNOC withdrew a proposal to reestablish alternate pay schedules that it agreed to abolish in 2015.

UCMC Response:

  • UCMC responded in the afternoon with its fourth economic proposal.  Despite the lack of significant movement from the Union, UCMC offered several packages to try and bridge the remaining gaps and invited the Union to do the same.

UCMC Fourth Economic ProposalUCMC made a new comprehensive economic proposal on wages and benefits:

  • Despite the lack of significant movement from NNOC, UCMC made two significant moves to try to achieve a breakthrough.
  • UCMC listened to concerns raised regarding spousal surcharges and proposed to drop them.  In return, it asked the Union to drop proposals to change other benefit language and agree to small increases in the share of medical premiums being paid to bring them closer to the market. Those would take place over time and be offset by wage increase. There would be no changes before July 2020.
  • UCMC provided Chicago market data showing that its wage proposals are competitive.
  • UCMC maintained its proposal that incentive pay not continue to increase.  Nurses would keep the incentive pay they have now.
  • UCMC has asked the Union for examples of other hospitals that pay incentive, but the Union has not been able to identify any.
  • UCMC increased its wage offer to 1.75% in years 1, 2, and 3 of a new contract and 2.0% in year 4.  It asked the Union to move in return.

NNOC/NNU Response:  The Union is still reviewing the proposal and may send us a response electronically in advance of the next session.