BURLINGTON - For the past several months, Technical Professionals at Fletcher Allen Health Care (FAHC) have been organizing for better staffing and quality patient care at Vermont's largest hospital. Staff in a wide variety of positions, such as Emergency Department Techs, Pharmacy Techs and Respiratory Therapists, all of whom are critical to the hospital's ability to provide quality patient care, have been organizing to join the healthcare union, Vermont Federation of Nurses & Health Care Professionals UPV/AFT Local 5221.
In the past, the Fletcher Allen administration spent millions of healthcare dollars on expensive anti-union consultants in efforts to prevent their staff from being able to engage in collective bargaining. In 2002, with the support of thousands of community members, over 1,100 nurses formed a union in order to provide safe staffing and quality patient care. Since that time, the nurses have essentially eliminated what was a major nursing shortage by improving their ability to do their jobs and raising the standards in their profession. Now the Technical Professionals are organizing for the same thing: quality patient care at the hospital.
Once again, the Fletcher Allen administration is engaging in activities to try to prevent workers from organizing. They have created an atmosphere of fear and and intimidation by holding mandatory anti-union meetings, threatening employees and terminating employees for talking to their co-workers about forming a union.
TAKE ACTION: The Vermont Workers' Center has been collecting signatures on a community petition calling on the hospital to respect workers right to organize (if you haven't signed the petition, click here). Now we are calling on Vermont's Congressional Delegation to support Fletcher Allen workers right to organize. Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders and Congressman Peter Welch are all sponsors of the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), federal legislation which would protect workers' right to organize. Join us in asking our congressional delegation to demand that the Fletcher Allen administration to act in accordance with EFCA and basic workers' rights principles. Please TAKE 1 MINUTE to send them all a letter.
STAY TUNED for future actions to support FAHC healthcare workers' right to organize.