Updated: September 25, 2019 02:59 PM
Created: September 25, 2019 09:07 AM
ALBANY - A demonstration was happening outside Albany Medical Center on Wednesday as nurses are calling for their first contract since voting to unionize a year ago.
They're calling on management to improve staffing and negotiate a fair contract. Albany Med says it has been negotiating in good faith.
Ironically, the sidewalk demonstration at the intersection of Holland and New Scotland avenues is the top of the stretch known as James Barba Way. Recently, the road that runs along the hospital and all the development up to Madison Avenue was named for the retiring Albany Med President and CEO. He retires next year after leading the hospital since 1995.
Dr. Dennis McKenna, an emergency room physician and current executive vice president, will succeed him.
Albany Med is a Level 1 Trauma Center and the largest private employer in the Capital Region.
The Capital District Building Trades rolled out a "Fat Cat" to mock the situation.
In April 2018, the nurses voted 1,161 to 582 to unionize. That summer, the new pediatric emergency room opened.
Albany Medical Center released a statement to NewsChannel 13 that states:
"There will be no disruption in care whatsoever. Albany Med has been negotiating in good faith for more than a year to achieve a contract that is fair to all of our employees and to all of our nurses. We cannot agree to any deal so costly that it endangers our ability to deliver the highest quality health care to people in our region. All decisions, on staffing and every other aspect of our hospital, are made to ensure we deliver the highest quality care to our patients in the safest possible environment," said Jeffrey Gordon of Albany Medical Center.
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