image description

Strike Averted: Hospital, Nurses Union Reach Agreement

The nurses union and the hospital have tentatively settled on a contract, averting what would have been the second strike. Bargaining for three consecutive days and stretching late into the night, Berkshire Medical Center and the local Massachusetts Nurses Union chapter settled on a five-year deal. That agreement needs to be ratified by a vote of the full 800 members.

image description

BMC Registered Nurses Plan to Strike Again

The nurses union has re-issued its plans to strike after lengthy negotiations Monday. The Massachusetts Nurses Association's Berkshire Medical Center chapter is planning to strike again. The union and the hospital has been attempting to settle a contract for more than a year and a half after the last contract expired in September 2016. In October, the nurses went on a one-day strike which was followed by a four-day lockout.

image description

BMC Nursing Unit Offers Compromise on Biggest Contract Hurdles

The union nurses at Berkshire Medical Center have completed a review of the hospital's proposed changes to health insurance and said they can live with it. But, they say there is still work to be done on the staffing issue. The local Massachusetts Nurses Association chapter and the hospital has been in contract negotiations for a year and a half. The last contract expired in September of 2016 and negotiations have been ongoing since. Last October, the nurses held a one-day strike which was f

image description

Labor Board to Hear Complaints Against BMC

The National Labor Relations Board will hear three cases against Berkshire Medical Center. The local chapter of the Massachusetts Nurses Association had filed a handful of unfair labor relations complaints with the hospital over contract negotiations. The labor board has now determined that three of them have enough merit to be heard.

image description

BMC Nurses Schedule Second Strike

The nurses at Berkshire Medical Center plan to go on strike for the second time. The local chapter of the Massachusetts Nurses Association voted to hold a one-day strike on Tuesday, Feb. 27. Some 800 nurses have been in difficult contract negotiations with the hospital for about a year and a half after the last agreement expired in September of 2016.

image description

BMC Nurses Give Bargaining Committee OK to Call 2nd Strike

The local Massachusetts Nurses Association chapter has been at odds with management for nearly a year and a half of contract negotiations. In October, the nurses staged a one-day strike, which was followed by a four-day lockout. The two sides returned to the bargaining table shortly after and still have yet to come to a settlement.

image description

Talks Continue Between BMC, Nurses; 2nd Strike Authorization Vote Set

The unionized nurses at Berkshire Medical Center will be voting again to give the bargaining committee the authority to call a one-day strike. Berkshire Medical Center management and the hospital's Massachusetts Nurses Association chapter have been at an impasse in negotiations for a year and a half. In October, a one-day strike was held, followed by a four-day lockout when the two sides couldn't reach a settlement.

image description

Who Withdrew?: MNA Mixes Up Labor Board Complaints

The Massachusetts Nursing Association has withdrawn one of the multiple unfair labor practice charges it filed against Berkshire Medical Center. In July, the registered nurses' union filed a charge against a new absentee policy the hospital's administration had established. The claim was that there was a modification to the contract because the new policy was not negotiated. The union said the hospital broadened the circumstances around absences for discipline.

image description

Nurses Association Rallies In North Adams Over Lockout

While much of the action has been taking place in Pittsfield, the registered nurses locked out by Berkshire Medical Center made a point of showing on Thursday that North Adams is affected, too. Nearly 100 members of the Massachusetts Nurses Association and their supporters lined the sidewalk along Hospital Avenue chanting to the police and security presence blocking the driveway to BMC's North County campus.

image description

BMC Management Focusing On Inside While Nurses Strike Outside

The unionized nurses at Berkshire Medical Center are certainly making their voices known this week, as they picket outside of the hospital.

image description

BMC Nurses Hold Vigil Prior To Strike

The nurses will be silent on Tuesday morning when the nurses walk out on the job and head to the picket lines. But, on Monday night, the nurses were filled with songs and speeches as it held a vigil outside of Berkshire Medical Center prior to the start of the strike.

image description

BMC Administration: Patient Care Will Be Unobstructed By Strike

Berkshire Medical Center brass say they've taken proper precautions to make sure patient care is uninterrupted during the strike and subsequent lock out. "We fully expect that our operations will be as they are any other day. If you are a patient and you need to be here with us or you are scheduled to be here and it is elective, it will be no different than it was any other day," said Berkshire Health Systems President David Phelps during a briefing with the media on Tuesday.

image description

BMC Asks Court To Halt Nurses Union Strike

The hospital is seeking a preliminary injunction to halt the nurses strike. Berkshire Medical Center filed for an injunction in federal court, claiming the Massachusetts Nursing Association had not followed contractual obligations prior to calling a strike. The union, however, asserts that the strike is legal and is continued to take to the picket lines on Tuesday.

image description

Registered Nurses Notify BMC of One-Day Strike

The Massachusetts Nurses Association delivered a 10-day notice to hospital management on Friday notifying it of the local bargaining unit's intent to hold a one-day unfair labor practice strike beginning at 7 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3, and running until 7 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 4.

image description

BMC Files Unfair Labor Practice Complaint Against Nursing Union

The hospital has fired back at the MNA with its own complaint with the National Labor Relations Board. Berkshire Health Systems has filed a complaint alleging that the nursing union is not bargaining in good faith, and even "surface bargaining" - a term used to describe bargaining without trying to actually reach a settlement.

image description

BMC Nurses Release Contents Of 'Unsafe Staffing' Reports

After hitting a stalemate in negotiations, the nursing union has released 437 "unsafe staffing forms," which document specific instances when nurses felt they needed more help. The local chapter of the Massachusetts Nursing Association, representing unioned nurses at Berkshire Medical Center, have been negotiations with Berkshire Health Systems on a new contract. Particularly, the nurses say they hope to a contractual agreement to bolster staffing. But, months ago the hospital had already put

image description

BMC Nurses Looking to Trustees to Help Contract Negotiations

BMC nurses are now making a pitch to get the hospital's Board of Trustees on their side. The Massachusetts Nurses Association has been in challenging contract negotiations with the hospital. After what call a fairly unproductive negotiating session on Tuesday, the nurses are attempting to meet with members of the Board of Trustees.

image description

Nurses File Second Unfair Labor Practices Against BMC

The nurses at BMC have filed a second complaint with the National Labor Relations Board against hospital administrators. The nurses are accusing Berkshire Medical Center leaderships, particularly Vice President of Human Resources Arthur Milano, of denying them information they deem is needed to negotiation health insurance. The nurses asked detailed financials surrounding the hospital's health insurance offer during negotiations.

image description

BMC Nurses: No Resolution Found In Latest Bargaining Session

Another negotiation session concluded Monday and nurses say little progress has been made toward a resolution. Mark Brodeur sits on the bargaining committee and on Monday night he said hospital officials rejected the change put forth by the nurses to leave charge nurses unassigned. The nurses have been trying to push for what they call "safe staffing" in the negotiations and contractually binding the hospital to provide what they see is adequate staff.

image description

BMC Nurses Take Second Step Toward Strike

The nurses at Berkshire Medical Center have taken the second step toward a strike. The Massachusetts Nursing Association filed a notification to end the existing agreement. The contract currently in place prohibits a strike and while the contract had an expiration date of September 2016, the duration clauses continued that unless a 30-day notice from either side was made or a new contract was signed, the existing one remained in place.

image description

BMC Nurses Give Bargaining Committee Authority to Call Strike

The registered nurses at Berkshire Medical Center are willing to strike over contract negotiations for what they say is chronic understaffing.

image description

BMC, Nurses Return to Bargaining as Strike Hangs Over Head

In the middle of a strike authorization vote and the union filing charges against the hospital with the National Labor Relations Board, the Massachusetts Nursing Association and Berkshire Medical Center return to the bargaining table Thursday in hopes to come to an agreement on a new contract.

image description

BMC Nurses Reject Hospital's 'Best and Final' Offer

The nurses at Berkshire Medical Center have rejected the hospital's "best and final offer." The union put the hospital's offer to a member vote on Wednesday and the nurses rejected the offer.

image description

BMC, Nurses Remain at Odds During Contract Negotiations

Berkshire Medical Center has presented what it says will be its "best and final offer" to settle a contract with the nursing union. A letter sent out by President David Phelps and Chief Operating Officer Diane Kelly was released on Wednesday outlining the hospital's offer. The Massachusetts Nurses Association and BMC have been at an impasse as the two sides try to negotiate a new three-year contract. The current one expired in September.

image description

Nurses Picket BMC As Staffing Issues Hold Up Collective Bargaining

Nurses and supporters paced back and forth along North Street and Wahconah, holding signs, chanting "if we're out here, something is wrong in there." On the otherside of those walls, the administration is reviewing data showing Berkshire Medical Center ranking in the top when it comes to patient safety and preparing a forum to celebrate those numbers with employees. Outside, the nurses chant that the staffing levels are unsafe. Inside, a staffing office is reviewing the personnel on hand to m

More Stories