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Letter: Standing with nurses

Congratulations and thank you to Donna Stern, Linda Judd and the rest of the Baystate Franklin Medical Center (BFMC) registered nurses and the Massachusetts Nurses Association (MNA) for standing up against the corporate greed of Baystate and for quality patient care.

Thank you also to state Sen. Stanley Rosenberg, state Rep. Stephen Kulik and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren for intervening in this seemingly unending negotiation. They helped to obtain a settlement that was blocked only by Baystate intransigence. Our elected representatives could obviously see that the nurses were right and had the patient’s best interest at heart! It is not beneficial to patient quality care (or the nurse’s health) to overwork the nurses. Yet, in the name of “current economic trends,” Chuck Gijanto, CEO of BFMC ignored this. By their behavior and rhetoric throughout the negotiations, Gijanto and the Baystate/Health New England managers have proved, at least to me, that they manage our Greenfield Community Hospital for the good of investors first and the patients second. I was sad to see Doctors Natenshon and Scott as well as several turncoat registered nurses getting involved in criticizing the nurses. To me, this whole episode was really all about union busting (the registered nurses’ union is the last union in the Baystate system.) Baystate management: I am sad for you (not really). You lost. You did not manage to break the union. You did not get the nurses to capitulate. There are many good reasons for unions and this is one of them. I feel the urge to break into a Woody Guthrie song. Tell your board of directors (wherever they are) that in Greenfield, we stand with our nurses!



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