National Nurses United, along with its affiliate the California Nurses Association, has organized nurses in 66 Kaiser Permanente facilities in California and at Providence Hospital in Washington, D.C. Nurses will be walking out on November 12 as a petition to increase safeguards to protect nurses from contracting Ebola. Nurses will be planning protests in other hospitals and health facilities nationwide on November 12.
The walk out is happening in the midst of a negotiation between Kaiser Permanente and its employees over a new labor agreement in Northern and Central California. Kaiser’s Chief of Human Resources, Gay Westfall said the company is well prepared for instances of Ebola. Westfall says the company is in compliance with federal recommendations and in some cases exceed those recommendations.
The claims CNA is making about Kaiser Permanente’s Ebola preparedness, in an attempt to justify a strike, are simply untrue,” Westfall said
Nurses say that the federal recommendations are not enough. A petition asking Congress or President Obama to declare a national standard has been sent out by the nurses’ union. Current recommendations include hooded full-body suits, more frequent hand washing and a supervisor who oversees the removal of infected gear.
We want something where a virus cannot penetrate anywhere from head to toe in the nurse’s body,” said Rose Ann DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United.
Read More – Update 1-U.S. Nurses Unions to Stage Strike Over Ebola Protections (Reuters, Sharon Bernstein)