Washington Hospital Center Strike
Terri Polick | NursingLink
It has been our longstanding policy that all essential employees are expected and required to make arrangements to be at work for their scheduled shifts during a snow or any other emergency situation. We are extremely proud and appreciative of the thousands of Washington Hospital Center associates who served selflessly, implementing personal preparedness plans that allowed them to report to work and serve our patients. Significantly, unlike many businesses, the demand for services at the Hospital Center actually increased during the 2010 storms.
For example, our inpatient population rose from 675 to 740; Emergency Department visits totaled 685; and 90 babies were delivered. All of these people received the care they needed throughout the storms because the vast majority of our staff came to work.
We remain committed to meeting the needs of the community regardless of the difficulty or complexity."
Lee released this statement through union officials about the arbitrator’s decision:
“I am blessed and thankful for the arbitrator’s just decision— full reinstatement with back pay. On my first night back, December 30, I was escorted into work by dozens of my co-workers, a dozen roses, and a celebration at work as well! I am pleased to be back at the bedside, giving outstanding nursing care to my patients as I have so diligently done for the past 31 years.
It is time for Washington Hospital Center to reinstate the other eight nurses who were also unjustly punished last winter and to negotiate in good faith with our union for a new collective bargaining agreement so that all the nurses at the hospital can work under just conditions and can give high quality patient care.”
In response to the arbitrator’s decision, Ross said, “I was thrilled when I heard about the decision. I thought it was about time.” Zinn said that he was glad the hospital accepted the arbitrator’s decision and put Geri Lee back to work with back pay. He said that NNU would continue to press the hospital to reinstate the other eight nurses who were dismissed.