Nurses at Alta Bates Summit Hospital on Ashby Avenue in Berkeley plan to strike today, the fifth walk-out since September 2011. The nurses are protesting concession demands they say “would undermine patient care protections as well as health and living standards for the registered nurses.”
An estimated 4,500 registered nurses from 11 Bay Area hospitals, including Berkeley’s Alta Bates, went out on a one-day strike today to protest what they say are some 100 concessions to patient care being made by their employer, Sutter Health.
In Berkeley and across the Bay Area employees have been taking to the streets today, May Day, to ensure their voices and grievances are heard.
A raucous, good-humored crowd of hundreds of nurses gathered this morning in front of the Alta Bates Summit campus on Ashby Avenue to rally for the one-day California Nurses Association strike against “sweeping demands for concessions” from Sutter Health, the hospital’s owner. The nurses listened to music, chanted slogans and cheered the many passing cars and trucks that honked horns in support.
Nurses at the two Alta Bates Summit hospital campuses in Berkeley will hold a one-day strike tomorrow to protest what they term “sweeping demands for concessions” on contract terms by Sutter Health, which owns Alta Bates Summit. Alta Bates Summit is bringing in contract nurses to cover for the strikers, and says patient care will not be affected.
Bob Hink served until last year as a member of the Alta Bates Summit Foundation Board of Delegates. He contributed this comment to Berkeleyside to alert people to the potential closure of the Alta Bates heart catheterization lab.