Labor Relations Board Issues Complaint Against Cook County Cook And John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital, Reports Illinois Nurses Association

CHICAGO, Feb. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- The State of Illinois Labor Relations Board issued a formal complaint on February 15, 2005, against the County of Cook, John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital.

The complaint charges that the hospital has interfered with, restrained, or coerced the nurses in the exercise of their rights guaranteed by the Illinois Public Labor Relations Act. Specifically, the complaint charges that the Hospital violated the Illinois Public Labor Relations Act by "applying its hospital access and security measures in a haphazard manner."

The Board complaint was issued in response to an Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) charge filed against the Hospital by the Illinois Nurses Association (INA), who represents the Cook County Registered Nurses.

According to the ULP charges,

* The Hospital is allowing representatives from the National Nurses Organizing Committee (NNOC) of the California Nurses Association (CNA) onto hospital premises into secure patient areas against their own security policies while excluding INA representatives who have a contractual right to conduct business on the premises.

* The Hospital has allowed a representative of CNA, who posed as an INA staff member, access to secure patient areas.

* The Hospital provided the CNA a conference room in a secure patient area for the purpose of distributing campaign materials, also in violation of hospital policy.

* The Hospital changed the locks to the INA union office without proper authorization. INA staff were locked out of their union office on the hospital premises in order to prevent INA's access to grievance and bargaining records needed to represent their RN members.

"It appears that the Hospital is supporting a raid from another union, rather than focusing on improving the nurses' working conditions so they can provide safe patient care. In our opinion, this is unconscionable," said Pam Robbins, RN, Illinois Nurses Association Vice President.

The Illinois Nurses Association is the pre-eminent voice for nurses in the state of Illinois. With over 100 years of exemplary service, the organization consistently strives to address issues concerning nurses. As a result, this tenacity has translated into major improvements in working conditions, salaries, and employment contracts for our members. INA is a constituent member of the American Nurses Association and the United American Nurses, AFL- CIO.

Illinois Nurses Association

CONTACT: Kathryn Martel of Illinois Nurses Association, +1-312-419-2900,cell: +1-312-918-9964,

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