Mid-Michigan District Health Department nurses ratify four-year contract
August 22, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Okemos - The registered nurses at Mid Michigan District Health Department ratified a new four year collective bargaining agreement last week, a few days before the Board of Commissioners also ratified the agreement.
The RNs were able to maintain the status quo for the employee share of health insurance premiums for the next four years. Both parties worked hard at keeping costs low through a Health Insurance Task Force which reviews health insurance plan options every year. That task force has succeeded in minimizing the exorbitant rising cost of health care premiums for the health department.
Other positive changes achieved through the negotiations are a 1% wage increase for the first and last year of the contract, restoring Columbus Day as a holiday in place of the floating holiday which had been instituted in the last agreement. Contract language changes also include the use of sick leave, stronger language on promotions and vacancies and the accrual of benefit time to be figured on budgeted not scheduled hours.
“The nurses are very pleased they managed to keep insurance costs the same and make many other positive changes to the contract. Retaining quality nurses at the health department is a major concern of this bargaining unit and we feel that our success in keeping the current health insurance contributions in place will help.” stated Anita Szczepanski, Labor Attorney and Labor Representative of the RNs at MMDHD. “Unfortunately, if it passes, Senate Bill 7 requiring public employees to pay 20 percent of the cost of their health care coverage, will defeat much of the hard work and effort the RNs have put into the Health Insurance Task Force over the years.”
The Michigan Nurses Association is the largest, most effective union for RNs in Michigan. As the voice of all registered nurses in Michigan, MNA advocates for nurses and their patients at the State Capitol, in the community, and at the bargaining table. MNA is a constituent member of National Nurses United and an affiliate of the AFL-CIO.