Press Release

Saint Louis University Hospital nurses to strike for patient safety

Nurses picketing in front of SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital in St. Louis, Mo.

St. Louis nurses to strike for two days to protest management’s outsourcing of RN jobs

Registered nurses at SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital in St. Louis, Mo., gave notice to their employer today that they will hold a strike for 48 hours from Dec. 27, 7 a.m., to Dec. 29, 6:59 a.m. due to management’s persistent union-busting and outsourcing of RN jobs, announced National Nurses Organizing Committee/National Nurses United (NNOC/NNU) today.

This 10 days’ notice of the nurses strike follows a strike authorization vote on Dec. 8 to authorize the nurse bargaining team to call a strike, if management failed to resolve key RN issues in contract negotiations. Nurses always give at least 10 days of advance notice to the hospital to allow for alternative plans to be made for patient care.

“Management has refused to seriously consider or compromise on our proposals regarding SSM’s outsourcing of nurse jobs,” said Jessica Tulk, RN in the emergency department. “We need to hire full-time union staff nurses who are invested in the community and our patients.”

  • Who: Registered nurses at Saint Louis University Hospital
  • What: Two-day strike
  • When: Wednesday, Dec. 27, 7 a.m. to Friday, Dec. 29, 6:59 a.m.
    • Picketing 7 a.m.-5 p.m. on Wed., Dec., 27; 7 a.m.-2 pm on Thursday, Dec. 28
      Rally at 9 am on Wed., Dec. 27 — nurses and community members to speak
  • Where:  Saint Louis University Hospital, at 1201 S. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, Mo.

"We have a staffing crisis, but a revolving door of outsourced nurses is not the solution," said Earline Shepard, RN in the cardiac catheterization lab at SLUH. "We are taking time away from our patients to assist temporary agency nurses. Staff nurses can give our patients the continuity of care they need in their medical treatment."

SLU Hospital nurses have been in negotiations since May 2023 for a new contract with little to no movement on key issues. Their contract expired on June 15, 2023. The RNs held an informational picket about the issues on July 19 and a one-day strike on September 25. The nurses urge management to invest in nursing staff and agree to a contract that addresses nurse retention and stops the overutilization of external agency nurses.

National Nurses Organizing Committee has represented nurses at Saint Louis University Hospital since 2012.

National Nurses Organizing Committee is an affiliate of National Nurses United, the largest and fastest-growing union and professional association of registered nurses in the United States with nearly 225,000 members nationwide. NNU affiliates also include California Nurses Association, DC Nurses Association, Michigan Nurses Association, Minnesota Nurses Association, and New York State Nurses Association.