Lawrence and Memorial Hospital Lockout Continues
Connecticut's first hospital strike in 25 years is entering its second week.
No organization ever wants to go through a strike and that goes double for strikes that occur around the holidays. But that's the case at the Lawrence and Memorial Hospital in New London, CT. Nearly 800 nurses and technicians walked out of the hospital on November 28th.
The strike was only supposed to last until November 30th, but when the striking workers attempted to return to their jobs, they were locked out and barred from entering, as the hospital had promised. Replacement workers have been brought in to work while the two sides continue to negotiate.
The two dominant issues have been job security and patient safety. Initial concern from workers came from charges stated that Lawrence and Memorial had been laying off workers and shifting work from their hospital to shell corporations.
The hospital presented its "best and final offer" on December2. It was rejected. The two sides will meet with a federal mediator Tuesday. In a statement, the hospital said, " As we have for 15 previous sessions, we are ready to negotiate in good faith in an effort to reach a mutually agreeable contract that will return our employees to what they do best – taking care of the patients in our community."
In the meantime, compensation has entered the picture, but not in the usual way.