Nurses at Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic 1st Street today celebrated the overwhelming vote of nurses there to join together in a union, represented by the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA). Nurses filed for election in December and cast their votes on Tuesday of this week. Results were counted today by the National Labor Relations Board.
"I'm feeling energized from the positive connection and camaraderie with my coworkers,” said Jackie Thorn, Infusion RN at Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic 1st Street. “Now that we are unified, I know that our goals of fairness, pay equity and retention can be achieved!”
Nurses at Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic 1st Street saw the need to unionize to address pay equity, dignity and respect in their workplace to retain nurses and care for patients in the community, and to have a voice in creating clearer and more transparent processes, procedures and policies for the clinic. Nurses succeeded in their drive to organize despite aggressive anti-union tactics by Essentia executives, including utilizing an emergency notification system to spread anti-labor messages that is meant to be used to warn employees in situations such as an active shooter or natural disasters.
The new MNA member nurses at Duluth Clinic 1st Street join thousands of fellow union nurses at other Essentia facilities, and at other healthcare systems in Duluth and the Northland, as part of the 22,000 MNA members in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Iowa. Along with the successful organizing of nurses at Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic 1st Street, nurses at Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic 2nd Street and Essentia East Market Advanced Practice Providers (APPs) are also currently working to organize for collective representation with MNA.