Hundreds of Nurses Threaten Strike at Local Hospital
LORAIN, Ohio — More than 500 registered nurses at Mercy Regional Medical Center in Lorain County have issued a strike notice.
“We are pretty frustrated. We’ve been trying to get to a settlement point since June. This isn’t spur of the moment. This has taken a lot of thought,” said Lori Gale, a registered nurse.
Represented by the Service Employees International Union District 1199, the nurses hand-delivered the 10 day strike notice Monday morning.
“Our biggest concerns are safe staffing ratios. The fact that you have nurses working 12 hour shifts that barely get a lunch so that affects the quality of care you give to your patients,” said Michelle Fairley, a registered nurse.
“They’ve done studies that show that more mistakes are made at the end of a long shift. It’s well documented. These are our concerns. And we want the best for our patients,” said Beth Zaworski, a registered nurse.
On top of staffing and salary concerns, nurses are also worried that decisions are being made in Cincinnati, where the hospital’s parent company is based.
“We feel that some of the decisions are not being made here. We do care about this community,” said Sue Mareno, a registered nurse.
Meantime, Mercy released a statement saying, “Our community can have confidence that Mercy will make sure the highest quality staff are in place to provide the proper care for our patients. We have a contingency plan and will continue to operate as normal should SEIU choose to follow through with a strike.”
If an agreement cannot be reached before October 19th, nurses plan to walk off the job at noon.