‘Spokane Loves Our Nurses’ ads urge fair Providence contract

spokane-loves-our-nursesSPOKANE (May 9, 2013) — Patient safety and fairness are at the heart of a new ad campaign hitting Spokane airwaves and computers this week. Spokane residents will soon see television ads, online ads, websites and more highlighting the differences between Providence Health & Services and the 1,600 registered nurses serving Sacred Heart Medical Center.

The launch of the “Spokane Loves Our Nurses” ad campaign coincides with National Nurses Week (May 6-12).  The television ad, airing on cable news and other stations in the Spokane region, features a Sacred Heart nurse.

The ad highlights findings from a recent Spokesman-Review investigation around Sacred Heart’s $50 million profit last year, and the non-profit Providence’s extravagant salaries for its executives back in Renton.

Nurses at Sacred Heart are currently in heated contract negotiations with Providence around fair working conditions and improving patient safety. For nine years Providence refused Sacred Heart nurses’ calls to protect patient safety by providing for adequate rest periods during and between their 12-hour, or sometimes 14-hour, shifts. Last month the Washington State Nurses Association (WSNA) won its legal case against Providence in the Washington State Supreme Court.

“Providence CEO Koster is telling Sacred Heart’s nurses to work harder for less, while he’s making more than $6.4 million in salary,” said Christine Himmelsbach, RN, WSNA Assistant Executive Director of Labor Relations. “Spokane loves our nurses, why doesn’t Providence love them, too?”

SpokaneLovesOurNurses.org includes pictures and personal stories from former Sacred Heart patients and invites visitors to post their own stories, and sign a petition to Providence CEO Koster.

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