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Letters to the editor

Friday, August 22, 2014 - Updated: 7:21 AM

Nurses union is not wanted

To the editor:

Recently we here at St. Mary's Healthcare have struggled through a difficult period. Even thought it has been frustrating and challenging, we nurses still strive to keep our patients safe. Every nurse's highest priority is patient safety. Management has been at our side through all of the changes. St. Mary's is always willing to listen to our concerns.

Many of the nurses here at St. Mary's Healthcare do not want the union to be our voice. NYSNA wants to be the voice for us nurses. We nurses will have more of a voice without the union. NYSNA is not our voice. Whether it is one, two or 200 nurses, we each have our own voice.

The union will make promises that they will be unable to keep. They will also take our hard-earned money and limit nurse-to-nurse management communication. The union will not improve patient safety, improve patient satisfaction, lessen patient acuity, or improve nurse-to-patient ratio.

Amsterdam Memorial Hospital did have a union, and the promises of more money were made, and never delivered. The staff that was unionized became disillusioned and all attempts to de-certify from the union were unsuccessful. While the union may propose to offer nurses greater benefits, better salary and improved nurse to patient ratios, the union cannot deliver. The union must go through a bargaining process. This bargaining does not guarantee these promised outcomes.

So let us keep raising our individual voices for our hospital in our community. We RNs are proud of the excellent care we provide. Unions do not belong in health care.

Vote "no" to the union.

Julie Burr, RN,


Having a say in what happens

To the editor:

I've been a registered nurse at St. Mary's for 23 years. It's been an honor and a privilege to work with some of the most talented and dedicated RNs you could ever want at your bedside in a time of need. We are proud of what we do and feel we should all have a voice in our working conditions and how we provide care. That's why I'm standing with the majority of nurses at our hospital who have already signed authorization cards to join the New York State Nurses Association.

We've seen a lot of changes in our own treatment and in patient care, many of which have been imposed on us from an outside corporation. We are joining the New York State Nurses Association because we want to have a say in what happens locally and be a part of a larger union that advocates for improvements in health care statewide, including better access to top-notch health care and legislation to guarantee safe nurse-to-patient staffing ratios at all hospitals.

I want to thank all of the elected officials, faith leaders, union members, physicians, and, above all, the patients who have shown their support. It means the world to us to know that our community is with us when we see supportive lawn signs and hear words of encouragement.

We're expecting to have our union election in September and we're looking forward to continuing to provide the best care for our community -- with a real voice.

Cyndi Gendron, RN,


Gov.: Step up to the mic

To the editor:

It is time for New Yorkers to write to local papers, labor unions, etc., to demand that Gov. Andrew Cuomo debate Zephyr Teachout on TV.

The voters of New York state have a right to hear the political positions and plans for the future of New York being espoused by each candidate.

Dr. Teachout has asked for a debate on a number of occasions. The governor has thus far refused to debate her.

I am a bit taken aback by his behavior. What is he afraid of? I am sure a career politician can defeat a newcomer in a primary debate, right? What is he hiding? Why is he running?

It is time for the incumbent governor to step up to the microphones and tell us what he is all about,

John Metallo,



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