Nurses at UW Health announce new union, demand voluntary recognition from board of directors

Nurses at UW Health announce new union, demand voluntary recognition from board of directors

Nurses with the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics Authority announced Thursday that they have formed a union and are demanding voluntary recognition from the UWHCA Board of Directors, according to a news release.

Citing a lack in proper staffing and available beds, nurses with UWHCA formed their union in an attempt to improve staff-to-patient ratios, according to the release.

“We’re demanding the resources, staffing and protections that are necessary to do our jobs effectively and advocate for our patients.” -Mariah Clark, an Emergency Department nurse at UW Hospital of 5 years. #News3Now @WISCTV_News3

— Amy Reid (@amyreidreports) December 19, 2019

If the union is recognized by the UWHCA Board of Directors, nurses would meet with the board to discuss best staffing practices and nurse-to-patient ratios going forward, the release said.

In 2011, when Gov. Scott Walker passed Act 10, the UWHCA was removed from the Wisconsin Employment Peace Act, which dissolved the nurses’ union at the end of their contract, according to the release.

“As we fight to win back our union, we’re creating a model for other workers across the state and around the country to innovate, build power and have a voice on the job,” said Kate Walton, an emergency department nurse at UW. “Working people in Wisconsin should be able to come together in a union — no matter where we work or where we live — and have a seat at the decision-making table to have more say about workplace conditions and other things that matter for our families.”

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