June 3, 2009
Dear MNA Colleague:
We are writing with important updates on a number of issues:
ELECTION FOR MNA COMMITTEE
Enclosed is the ballot for the upcoming election. Please vote and return the ballot to the MNA, postmarked no later than June 19, 2009. You may double envelope your ballot if you would like to keep your vote confidential; however, your name and address MUST be printed on the outside envelope so that your MNA membership can be verified.
SICK TIME POLICY
We are hearing from many of you that nurses are being called into investigatory meetings with managers to discuss sick time use. As you may remember, the MNA notified the Brigham that we are not in agreement with the new sick time policy and we have reserved our rights to challenge its application on a case-by-case basis. We urge you to bring an MNA Committee member to any investigatory meeting and to notify a Committee member to file a grievance over ANY warning (initial, verbal or written) that you receive for sick time use. If you receive a warning and don’t file a grievance, it appears (for legal purposes) that you agree with the discipline.
PARTNERS CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT
It has recently come to our attention that the Hospital is now requiring nurses to sign the Partners Confidentiality Agreement that is presented with your annual evaluation. This is the only hospital policy that nurses are asked to sign and it is the MNA’s position that nurses should not be required to sign this document. The MNA/BWH contract is the written agreement between the parties and governs whether or not there is just cause for discipline. THEREFORE, WE ADVISE ALL NURSES NOT TO SIGN THIS AGREEMENT. Read it carefully but tell your manager that the MNA has advised you not to sign it.
We have heard from many of you that you are being asked to float to other units despite the fact that you have not received a unit-based orientation. The hospital should not be asking you to float if you have not received an orientation, so our advice is to decline to float in this situation. The contract also offers additional protection in that you cannot be expected to perform any duties which you believe you are not competent to perform. Please familiarize yourself with this language (Article 16), which states as follows:
“Except in emergency circumstances, nurses will not be floated to another unit without their having received the unit-based orientation per the Hospital’s floating guidelines. Such orientation shall include competency orientation in the technical skills required of float nurses in such unit, which shall be provided to the nurse in advance of floating, and shall also include unit familiarization. A nurse who is floated to another unit will not be expected to perform any duties, either independently or paired with another nurse, which the nurse believes she/he is not competent to perform.”
We fought long and hard for this language 13 years ago – please use it to protect yourself and your patients!
Finally, please be in touch with us with any concerns or questions you may have. There have been several instances recently in which the hospital tried to avoid its obligations under the contract, and when nurses have contacted us to share their concerns, we have been able to ensure that their contractual rights were protected!
Your MNA Committee
Barbara Norton, Chairperson, NICU
Michael Robinson, Vice-Chair, ER
Marian Wright, Treasurer, CWN9
Judy Lydon, Secretary, CWN8
Susan Tartaglia, Membership, Care Coord.
Judith Racowsky, CWN9
Mary Ann Dillon, 3BC
Trish Powers, OR
Connie Gassett, AMB GYN
Jean Cabral, 9E
Dianne Griffin, 5A
Maureen Kenneally-Ward, L&D
George Rotondo, 6E
Sandra Abber, 16AB
Kristin Robishaw, NICU
Laurie Demeule, Cath Lab.
Michael Savoy, ER
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