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NY Nurses Reach Tentative Agreement With Montefiore Bronx, Mount Sinai Maine After 3-Day Strike

NY Nurses Reach Tentative Agreement With Montefiore Bronx, Mount Sinai Maine After 3-Day Strike

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NEW YORK CITY (WABC) — Nurses at Montefiore and Mount Sinai reached tentative agreements with the hospital and will return to work Thursday.

The New York State Nurses Association has been on strike since Monday, demanding better pay and a better nurse-to-patient ratio.

“This is a historic victory for New York City nurses and for nurses across the country. NYSNA nurses did the impossible, saving lives day and night during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now we’ve shown again that nothing is impossible for hero nurses. Through our unity and by putting everything on the line, we won enforceable safe staffing ratios at both Montefiore and Mount Sinai where nurses were striking for patient care,” said NYSNA President Nancy Hagans.

Mount Sinai sent a brief statement that said in part, “Our proposed agreement is similar to that between NYSNA and eight other New York City hospitals. It is fair and responsible and puts patients first.”

Nurses say that with this arrangement, there will always be enough nurses at the bedside to provide safe patient care, not just on paper. The new staffing ratios are effective immediately.

According to nurses, there are more than 500 open positions at Mount Sinai alone.

Meanwhile, at Montefiore, their agreement includes a 19 percent raise and 170 nursing positions, an increase in so-called pool nurses. This will add more registered nurses and nurse practitioners to emergency departments.

The nurses also won student nursing partnerships to recruit local Bronx nurses to stay as union nurses at Montefiore long-term.

“This is a historic victory for New York City nurses and for nurses across the country. NYSNA nurses did the impossible, saving lives day and night during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now we’ve shown again that nothing is impossible for hero nurses. Through our unity and by putting everything on the line, we won enforceable safe staffing ratios at both Montefiore and Mount Sinai where nurses were striking for patient care,” said NYSNA President Nancy Hagans.

Both facilities have agreed to immediate return-to-work agreements, so nurses will be back at patient bedsides today.

Nurses at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, who had threatened to strike since Jan. 17, also reached a tentative deal and withdrew their 10-day strike notice.

If no prior agreement had been reached today, Mount Sinai had traveling nurses in town who would be ready to go.

About 3,500 nurses at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx and about 3,600 at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan left work on Monday after last minute talks to avert the strike broke down.

“We love our work. We want to take care of our patients. But we just want to do it safely and in a humane way where we feel valued,” said one nurse.

Earlier this week, the union announced that Flushing Hospital Medical Center, University of Richmond Medical Center and BronxCare had approved their contracts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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