Community supports nurses at informational rally in Sault Ste. Marie

More than 150 nurses and community members participated in an informational picket at MyMichigan Medical Center Sault yesterday.

The nurses are members of the Michigan Nurses Association union and are in contract negotiations with hospital management. 

The nurses say they are frustrated with hospital executives who are demanding concessions in the contract that are not being asked of non–union nurses and wages that are not competitive with other area hospitals.

These factors jeopardize the ability to recruit and retain nurses to the Sault Ste. Marie hospital, according to the nurses union.

“Every time a coworker leaves to go somewhere else with higher pay and better benefits, my heart just drops,” Elizabeth Pancheri, RN, said.

The nurses expressed appreciation for the support they received from community members during the picket.

“It has been so inspiring to see our community rally around trying to protect what has made our hospital special. We are fighting for safe staffing. Together, I really believe that we can make sure that MyMichigan always puts patients before profits,’ Joy Roe, RN, said.

As of March 12, MyMichigan’s administration had yet to agree to any future negotiation dates, according to the MNA union.