Cypress Fairbanks RNs Approve New Pact with Houston Hospital
Cite Patient Care, Economic Improvements
Registered nurses at Houston’s Cypress Fairbanks Medical Center voted unanimously Monday night to approve a new collective bargaining agreement with the hospital, extending the only private union contract for nurses in America’s fourth largest city.
The RNs, members of the National Nurses Organizing Committee-Texas/National Nurses United, say the new agreement will give them greater ability to advocate for patient safety as well as providing important economic gains for the RNs.
Perhaps most notably, the agreement creates, for the first time in Texas, a transparent equitable wage system based on years of RN experience that ensures fairness in compensation.
Among the improvements in the new agreement is increased paid time for members of the RNs’ Professional Performance Committee, a group of direct care RNs elected by their peers, to meet with management to address staffing and other care concerns, and new reporting forms for documenting staffing concerns.
Additionally, the agreement sets increased limits on assignment of RNs to hospital areas outside their professional expertise, and expanded paid leave time for clinical education programs.
All Cypress Fairbanks RNs will receive pay increases of up to 9.25 percent, with greater increases based on years of service to the hospital and community, over three years which the RNs say is important for retaining experienced hospital RNs and recruiting new nurses. The pact also provides for maintaining current health coverage and retirement plans.
"I am excited to utilize the new Staffing Committee form that allows bedside nurses to formally request (hospital officials) address staffing issues," said Brenda Landreville, a Cypress Fairbanks RN.
"Coming from California where nurses have long been paid based on years of experience, I am proud to have worked to ensure that Cyfair nurses get that same respect," said Valerie Gray, RN.
Also see the NNOC-Texas Page