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CHI Harrison Silverdale workers conduct informational picket

UPDATE (Nov. 16, 2017) From the Kitsap Sun — Hospital workers picket at Harrison Silverdale — Union workers (UFCW 21) at Harrison Medical Center held an information picket Wednesday in Silverdale to draw attention to what they see as unsafe staffing levels at the hospital, among other issues.

The following is from UFCW 21:

SILVERDALE (Nov. 15, 2017) — UFCW 21 members who work at CHI Harrison Silverdale will be holding a large informational picket today from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. outside the hospital on the corner of NW Myhre Road and Ridgetop Boulevard NW. They will be joined by many in the Kitsap community to show management that they are all aligned for safe staffing and vital care, two of the key issues in the contract negotiations that have been ongoing for many months.

The hospital’s Service & Dietary workers, pro-techs, pharmacists, nurses and others, will be joined by doctors and community leaders at the picket. All union members and community supporters are invited to participate.

“As a doctor and daughter of a recently hospitalized patient, I am aware of the direct impact staffing has on health outcomes,” said Dr. Niran Al-Agba, adding:

“I have just returned from Washington, D.C. advocating on behalf of patients, healthcare staff, and physicians on Capitol Hill as a part of the bipartisan National Physicians Council. I informed healthcare staffers at the offices of Senators Cantwell and Murray how important quality, affordable care is in Kitsap County. To that end, that is why I am standing with healthcare workers at CHI-Harrison at their upcoming informational picket. We as a community need to come together and demand adequate staffing and dignity for healthcare workers at CHI Harrison. Our health and safety are worth it!”

CHI Harrison Silverdale healthcare workers feel that taking action like today’s informational picket is the only way to get the contracts that they deserve. Their fellow UFCW 21 members at St. Joseph’s just reached a tentative agreement that includes strong job security language, wage increases and more. The UFCW 21 bargaining teams at CHI Harrison Silverdale have been working hard at the table and have successfully taken their message to community meetings, town halls, rallies and Department of Health hearings.

Today’s informational picket is an opportunity to bring issues directly to patients and the community. In addition to community members who can join the picket at any time, employees plan to join the picket line on their lunches, breaks, before and after work, and on a day off work.

UFCW 21 is the state’s largest private sector union with over 46,000 workers in grocery stores, health care, retail and other industries.

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FIND OUT HOW TO JOIN TOGETHER with your co-workers to negotiate for better wages, benefits, and a voice at work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!