New York City nurses reach tentative agreement with Montefiore Bronx, Mount Sinai Main after 3-day strike

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NEW YORK CITY (WABC) — The Montefiore and Mount Sinai nurses have reached tentative arrangements with the hospital and will return to work on Thursday.

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

“This is a historic victory for nurses in New York City and for nurses across the country. NYSNA nurses have done the impossible, saving lives night and day during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now we’ve shown again that “Nothing is impossible for Hero Nurses. Through our unity and putting everything on the line, we’ve earned secure staffing rates applicable in Montefiore and Mount Sinai, where nurses have gone on strike to care for patients,” said NYSNA President, Nancy Hagans.

Mount Sinai sent a brief statement saying, in part: “Our proposed agreement is similar to the one between NYSNA and eight other New York City hospitals. It is fair and accountable 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 staff ratios are effective immediately.

According to the nurses, there are more than 500 vacancies open on Mount Sinai alone.

Meanwhile, in Montefiore, the deal includes a 19% increase and 170 nursing positions, an increase in what are called floating pool nurses. This will add more Registered Nurses and Nurse Practitioners to emergency departments.

The nurses also gained partnerships from student nurses to recruit local Bronx nurses to stay as union nurses in Montefiore for an extended period.

“This is a historic victory for nurses in New York City and for nurses across the country. NYSNA nurses have done the impossible, saving lives night and day during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now we’ve shown again that “Nothing is impossible for Hero Nurses. Through our unity and putting everything on the line, we’ve earned secure staffing rates applicable in Montefiore and Mount Sinai, where nurses have gone on strike to care for patients,” said NYSNA President, Nancy Hagans.

Both facilities have agreed to immediate return-to-work arrangements for nurses to return to the bedside with patients today.

Nurses at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, who had been threatening to strike beginning Jan. 17, also reached a tentative agreement and withdrew their 10-day strike notice.

Had an interim agreement not been reached today, Mount Sinai had roving nurses in town who would have been ready to go.

About 3,500 nurses at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx and about 3,600 at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan walked out of work on Monday after last-minute talks to stop the strike failed.

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

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

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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