Monterey Park Hospital, Union Reach Accord
Garfield Medical Center in Monterey Park and the Service Employees International Union, representing 450 registered nurses, reached agreement on the initial portion of a contract this week, ending a harsh two-year dispute.
In exchange for a union agreement to drop all unfair labor practices filings with the National Labor Relations Board, the medical center agreed to create a joint management-nurse committee to discuss staffing and patient care, and to increase salaries by 29% over four years.
The union and officials at the hospital, which is owned by Tenet Healthcare Corp., will continue bargaining in the next three months and then submit a full contract for ratification by both sides.
In a statement released Friday, the hospital’s chief executive, Philip Cohen, praised the agreement, saying that he expected it to bring “cost predictability, stable nurse staffing and a long period of labor peace.”
Intensive care unit nurse Joanne Kawai, who belongs to the union, said the Garfield nurses were very excited about their gains.
“Now we have a voice affecting the quality of care and improvements,” she said of the agreement.