Thursday, June 18, 2015

Don't believe the lies

The Healthcare Workers of New Milford and Danbury Hospitals in Connecticut have an important decision tomorrow. 
They decide whether or not to join the the union, in this case, AFT.
Coworkers and AFT staff have been reaching out to them.
Managers and "consultants" have been having meetings with them.
I imagine many of them will be glad when it is over.

I have a message, don't believe the lies. 

I was were you are 4 years ago.
I was a RN at Backus Hospital in Norwich.
I had worked there for 17 years at that time, all in the ER, first as a PCT, then a RN.
I had seen the cost cutters come through.
I had seen my hospital change.
I received a call from a coworker and I sat and talked to "the man from the union."
Management said they union was evil, that it would take my money, that I would never have a voice.

They lied.

We now have a seat at the table.
Not "the union," but I and my coworkers.
We negotiate a contract with that covers wages and working conditions.
Again, not "the union," but us, aided by a professional field rep whom we picked.
Because we are an autonomous local, we make our own decisions. 

Last Thursday I visited my hospital Chaplin, whom I have known for 21 years.
Sister Rita has spent a lot of days with me in the ER, comforting patients, families, and staff.
I asked her to bless me on that, my last day at the bedside, because after 21 years at the bedside as a PCT and RN, I was leaving to serve as your state federation executive Vice President.

Management wants to make "the union" some outside third party.
What I am saying is this.
I have walked your walk, not in some distant past but as recent as last week.
I have a voice.
My coworkers have a voice.
You will have a voice.

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