Today, the bargaining team for Rochester General Hospital (RGH) participated in its first official bargaining session with the bargaining team for the Rochester Union of Nurses & Allied Professionals (RUNAP). Over the coming weeks/months, we will be meeting with the union with the goal of reaching a collective bargaining agreement that ensures patients can receive the best possible care and that nurses can do their best work.
As you may know, first union contracts can take a great deal of time to negotiate, but we intend to move forward as quickly and carefully as possible so that both sides can reach an agreement.
In union negotiations, both the union and the employer make proposals. As the parties reach an agreement on specific issues, these agreements are typically signed off on by both parties and called “tentative agreements” (or TAs).
Negotiations often begin with “non-economic issues” (such as work rules and scheduling practices) before shifting to “economic” issues (such as wages).
Once bargaining on all topics is complete and a full tentative agreement has been reached, the entire package of proposals is usually presented to you, the bargaining unit, by the union, for your consideration and approval, a process also known as ratification.
During today’s bargaining session, RGH and RUNAP met for nearly three hours and had a productive discussion. The parties agreed to certain ground rules for the bargaining sessions in the future and are working on scheduling the next several sessions.
The union made a number of initial proposals on a wide range of topics, including:
- Union Activity and Recognition
- Safety and Security
- Time Off
- Reassignment, Cancellation and Layoff
- Tuition and Conferences
- RGH will consider and discuss all of RUNAP’s proposals and will offer its own counter-proposals at the subsequent bargaining session.
RGH proposed that RUNAP-represented employees participate in the same 2023 benefits program that will soon be announced and for which Open Enrollment will begin shortly. RGH also proposed a no strike/no lockout provision to the contract, which means the union would agree not to strike and RGH would agree not to lock out RUNAP-represented employees.
For purposes of scheduling the next negotiation session, RGH provided the union with dates when its bargaining team is unavailable, and the union committed to proposing dates for the next bargaining session.
During this process, we are committed to bargaining in good faith and to providing you with ongoing and transparent communications.
If you have any questions, please reach out to your Human Resource Operations Manager.