At Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital (SNLH), a strong majority of us voted to approve the agreement with Samaritan management on a new union contract.
115 of us united—including ER Techs, Pharmacy Techs, Certified Nursing Assistants, Respiratory Therapists, Physical Therapists, Radiologic Technologist, Surgical Techs, Phlebotomists, Social Workers and Operating Room Custodians—in our drive to raise staffing and safety standards, improve healthcare for our patients and staff, increase our wages, and expand education funding.
“This has been a long two years of dealing with the pandemic and the impact of the wildfires on our community. We knew that we had to see real gains in the contract to be able to attract and retain highly-skilled caregivers to provide the quality care that our community deserves,” says Brittany King, CT Special Imaging Tech, Samaritan North Lincoln.
“I’m overwhelmed with the gains in wages that we’re receiving, ” says Patricia Tutt, Sterile Processing Tech, Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital. “I’m receiving a 12.75% wage increase right away and it’s going to make a huge difference in my life! I will be able to breathe a little and just live and work without the worry and stress of wondering whether I will be able to keep a roof over my children’s head. I’m proud of how we remained united to win a great contract.”
We won wage increases that reflect the value of our dedication to our community. The average wage increase over the life of the contract is 22.48%, with an average 10% increase the first year, or an average raise of $2.42/hour. Some caregivers are receiving as high as 23.9% the first year!
“We’re glad to see improvements that bring wages here on the coast to equality with Samaritan jobs in the valley. We know how hard it is to attract and retain skilled staff and we need solutions that support people living and working in Lincoln City,” says Susan Peters, Intake Coordinator, Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital. “We love our community and providing quality care for our patients and it’s great to see the recognition for our dedication through these tough times.”
Better Staffing and Healthcare
We also spoke up and won guaranteed health insurance premiums and a stronger voice on the job so we can advocate for better staffing in our hospital. Patient care can suffer when we do not have enough staff or when we get sick. This win allows us to begin to address the staffing shortage in our hospital and keep us safe and healthy so we can better serve our community.
“I’m proud that we were able to get guaranteed health insurance premiums through the life of the contract and a seat on the Health Insurance Advisory Committee,” says Kelly Taylor, Patient Financial Counselor, Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital. “Keeping healthcare costs contained and ensuring that we have a say in keeping healthcare insurance affordable is important to keeping staff and families healthy. We need to stay healthy so we can be there for our patients.”
When We Fight, We Win
“As a union of frontline caregivers, we increasingly see Samaritan Health Systems making centralized decisions that impact local community hospitals like North Lincoln,” says Meg Niemi, President, SEIU 49. “This contract is a step in the right direction for coastal caregivers to be treated with the respect and equality they deserve. Along with SEIU members at Good Samaritan in Corvallis, Albany General, and Pacific Communities in Newport, caregivers at North Lincoln are committed to continue to make sure Samaritan is a great place to work and receive care.”