Nurses set to present new labor proposal to hospitals

April 27, 2010, 1:02 a.m.

In its ongoing dispute with Stanford Hospital & Clinics and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, the Committee for Recognition of Nursing Achievement (CRONA) said last week that it refuses to back away from the bargaining table.

Protesting the new nursing contract put forth by the hospitals, CRONA is set to present a new comprehensive proposal this Wednesday.

CRONA President Lorie Johnson sent a letter last Friday to the two hospitals, writing, “The current labor dispute affects not only the lives of our 2,700 nurses, but also the welfare of our entire community.”

Johnson asked the hospitals to reevaluate the proposed contract with the nursing union.

The Stanford hospitals, however, have not made concessions to their “last, best and final offer,” which was presented to the nurses earlier this month. Greg Souza and Dale Spartz, the respective vice presidents of human resources at Lucile Packard and Stanford Hospital, urged the nurses to reconsider their final offer.

On Monday, the vice presidents sent a brief letter to CRONA, saying the hospitals “will review whatever CRONA wants to send our chief negotiator directly, or to submit to him through the mediator.”

Souza and Spartz said they “will certainly meet to try to wrap matters up” if CRONA’s pending proposal “falls within the parameters of the Last, Best & Final Offers.” They emphasized, however, that unless these parameters were met, there would be “no purpose to be served in meeting.”

CRONA remains adamant about reworking the “final” offer.

“In an effort to break the logjam that we now face, CRONA has spent many hours talking to its members to see if it could make further proposals that would bring the parties back to the table and hopefully put them closer to resolving their differences,” Johnson wrote. She said the issue will only be resolved “without serious injury to all” with continued negotiation.

— An Le Nguyen

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