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De Blasio Announces Labor Agreement with City Nurses, Healthcare Workers

By Colby Hamilton on June 25, 2014 7:49pm 

 Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a new labor deal with nurses and healthcare workers — the second of his administrations — on June 25, 2014.
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a new labor deal with nurses and healthcare workers — the second of his administrations — on June 25, 2014.
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DNAinfo/Colby Hamilton

CIVIC CENTER — Mayor Bill de Blasio announced late Wednesday that the city has struck a deal with two health care workers’ unions that closely resemble the contract brokered with the teachers' union two months ago.

The agreement with the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) and 1199 Service Employment International Union (SEIU), which is good through 2018, provides retroactive payments for the years they worked without a contract.

All told, the deal with NYSNA’s 8,000 employees will cost the city $689.3 million, while the deal with the 2,500 members of 1199 will add up to $190 million.

Both contracts follow raise patterns similar to those of the United Federation of Teachers, adding up to about 10 percent in raises over the six years of the contracts, according to the Mayor’s office.

The retroactive wage increases, amounting to 4 percent increases for 2009 and 2010, will be paid out in yearly lump sums over the course of the next five years.

“Today marks another step toward restoring a productive, respectful relationship between the city and its workforce, while securing much-needed certainty that protects our long-term fiscal health,” de Blasio said in a statement.

Both contracts are also expected to realize health savings as part of a deal worked out between the city unions and the Mayor’s office. After those savings are realized, de Blasio’s office said, the cost of the labor deal for NYSNA will drop to $487.4 million, and to $123 million for 1199’s members.

The agreement also provides a number of additional contractual agreements, including the establishment of an employee training fund within each union and the creation of funds to help members with the cost of child and elder care.

Leaders for both unions praised the deal, with 1199’s president George Gresham calling it a “landmark agreement” and NYSNA’s local president Anne Bové saying it makes “positive changes in the lives of city nurses and our patients.”

The Mayor’s office said the agreement does not change the estimated labor costs in the current city budget — which is expected to be passed late on Wednesday — or the city’s financial plan going forward.

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