The California Nurses Association (CNA) began yet another strike against Sutter Health on May 17, 2013, marking the organization’s ninth strike against the nonprofit healthcare company since 2011. The strike is expected to last until Friday, May 24, 2013, and includes several Sutter facilities throughout Northern California. Over 2,800 nurses are likely to be affected by the strike.
CNA, which is affiliated with the AFL-CIO, is among California’s largest health employee unions. Over the past few years, it has aggressively targeted California healthcare employers, demanding higher pay and increased benefits.
On its website, CNA listed its demands for lower health coverage costs, increased rest time between shifts, and less overtime. It also claims that Sutter plans to eliminate paid sick leave. According to CNA, its demands are justified by Sutter’s “nearly $4.2 billion in profits since 2005,” and high executive pay.
Sutter responded by noting that it pays full-time nurses an average of $137,000 per year and part-time nurses an average of $105,000 per year. It also claimed to offer generous benefits, including the option of a 100% employer-paid health benefits package, a pension plan worth $84,000 per year on average in retirement, and up to 40 paid days off per year.
The affected hospitals plan to replace the participating employees with temporary nurses during the strike.