Strike at UCMC averted when hospital and nurses’ union reach tentative accord

Nurses demonstrating at the University of Chicago Medical Center earlier in the year. (Herald file photo)

Staff writer

The University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC) announced early Saturday that it had reached a tentative agreement on a new contract with the National Nurses Organizing Committee/National Nurses United.

The nurses’ union announced that it had called off the one-day strike scheduled for Nov. 24.

“Both sides have been working since March on a contract that not only recognizes the valuable contributions our nurses make to our organization, but also ensures UCMC remains at the forefront of medical care and scientific research for years to come,” said Chief Nursing Officer Debra Albert in a statement, calling the agreement “an equitable compromise for the good of our patients, our community and each other.”

National Nurses Organizing Committee/National Nurses United, which had planned to discuss strike logistics and make signs on Saturday at Flood’s Hall, 1515 E 52nd Place, said details about the agreement would come out after nurses vote to ratify it on Tuesday.

In a statement, the union said that “the nurses are pleased to see the issues successfully resolved.”

If the 2,200 nurses ratify the contract, it would mark the end of a divisive collective bargaining stage process that resulted in the first nurses strike against the UCMC in hospital history in September.