Oregon Nurses Assn.
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News Release
ONA Statement on OFNHP's Kaiser Strike Vote - 10/11/21

The Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) supports our colleagues at the Oregon Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals (OFNHP) who are fighting for safe staffing and quality patient care at Kaiser Permanente facilities. The results of their strike vote are unprecedented, with 96% voting in favor of staging a strike; a clear and unequivocal message that Kaiser administration must settle on a fair contract and listen to the voices of their frontline healthcare workers. 

In a recent survey, more than 42% of Kaiser’s nurses and other healthcare professionals indicated they are considering leaving the healthcare workforce because of the treatment they have received at Kaiser. These numbers support ONA’s position that Oregon’s healthcare system is facing an existential crisis; one that has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic but which was caused by decades of failures by hospital systems like Kaiser.

OFNHP’s members are joined by tens of thousands of other workers who are part of the 21-union Alliance of Health Care Unions, many of which have now authorized strikes as well. Across five states, over 40,000 of the 52,000 workers in the Alliance have local contracts allowing them to strike (38,000 were able to strike as of October 1, with another 2,000 able to strike November 1). 

The primary issue for OFNHP’s members is safe staffing. Again, Oregonians must listen to the concerns of nurses and other healthcare workers who have been saying for years that staffing must be a priority or we will see a worsening of already crisis-level problems across the state.  

OFNHP and ONA are in 100% agreement: health care systems like Kaiser must do more to address safe staffing. This is a crisis they caused and Kaiser's failure to reach an agreement is putting even more pressure on an already overstressed nursing workforce. 

It is time for Kaiser to put patients before profits and settle a fair contract. 

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The Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) is the state’s largest and most influential nursing organization. We are a professional association and labor union which represents 15,000 nurses and allied health workers throughout the state. Our mission is to advocate for nursing, quality health care and healthy communities. For more information visit: www.OregonRN.org. 

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