A union representing more than 14,000 registered nurses at Dignity Health reported Monday that its membership had voted to ratify a new contract with wage increases of 13.5% over a four-year term.
The California Nurses Association also touted new provisions in the contract that would strengthen prevention measures the company must take against infectious diseases. This issue has been one nurses have repeatedly raised amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a respiratory disease that has killed more than 670,000 U.S. citizens.
“As we face yet another surge of COVID-19 patients filling up our hospitals, we are proud to have achieved additional health and safety protections for our RNs and patients,” said registered nurse Sandy Reding, president of the CNA and the National Nurses Organizing Committee.
Union officials finished counting votes Friday night but did not say what percentage of members voted for the four-year agreement. Here are other highlights:
Nurses gained representation on Dignity’s pandemic task force and will get the highest level of personal protective equipment.
They were able to provide input on ensuring workplace violence prevention.
The company will maintain current pension and continue to provide health care benefits to retirees.
Both the union and company agreed to fight racial injustice and health care disparities in communities they serve.
They also will receive tuition reimbursement to continue to expand their knowledge and skills.
“We are hopeful that with the greater economic and health care gains we can recruit new nurses and retain experienced RNs to better protect our patients’ safety,” said registered nurse Kathy Dennis.