Nurses Say, “We Love Parkview, Stop Stalling Our Contract” – December 11, 2008
Surrounded by chanting supporters and buoyed by a rousing speech from California's lieutenant governor, nurses from Parkview Community Hospital rallied and marched this morning, calling on hospital administrators to stop stalling and finish negotiating their union contract.
"Parkview nurses have Parkview's best interest at heart," said Penny Brown, a nurse in the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). "We just want to have our voice heard in the workplace. And in order to do that, we need to finish negotiating our first union contract."
The 250 nurses at Parkview voted in February for a voice on the job with UNAC/UHCP and have been negotiating since spring. Now that talks have reached a crucial juncture, Parkview administrators and CEO Doug Drumwright are stalling.
"It is possible to work out a contract that works for both sides," Lt. Gov. John Garamendi told rally goers, "so let's get on with it!" Garamendi noted that other hospitals in the area had constructive working relationships with the union nurses at their facilities. "Workers have the right to organize and negotiate a contract," Garamendi added. "That's a basic American right."
Parkview nurses said they want a contract so they can have a voice in safeguarding the hospital as a vital health care resource for the Riverside community. "We do not fight because we are disloyal to Parkview, but rather we fight for its success and its potential to thrive," said Linda Hippolyte, a med/surg nurse. "It is about helping us improve the quality of patient care at our community hospital."
Parkview nurses are asking their supporters to call CEO Drumwright at 951-352-5400 and tell him to stop stalling and finish negotiating the contract so caregivers can get back to their top priority: providing quality care to their patients.