New York City Nurses are striking; Here's why + Hospitals affected - Cover

At the moment, thousands of nurses from two hospitals located in New York City are currently striking. For those out of the loop, these NYC nurses are protesting the low pay, understaffing, and unsafe working conditions in the two hospitals affected by this walkout.

Why are nurses striking in New York City?

The strike began on Monday, January 9, 2023. At the heart of the strike is the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA), which is protesting for a fair contract for all nurses involved. There are over 7,000 nurses who walked out of the affected hospitals in New York City. 

New York City Nurses are striking; Here's why + Hospitals affected - 2
Image Courtesy of Andrew Kelly via Reuters

Affected hospitals

If you’re in New York City or a healthcare worker, it’s better to stay informed about which hospitals are affected by the walkout. So far, nurses from two major hospitals in the state have walked out and come together to protest unfair labor practices.

The hospitals affected by this strike are Montefiore Medical Center (Bronx area) and Mount Sinai Hospital (Harlem area). Due to the strike, these hospitals are unable to receive patients. Incoming ambulances are being rerouted to other hospitals or medical centers that can treat patients.

Nurses are burnt out

Although it is in their pledge to be in the service of humanity, it’s understandable why New York City nurses are striking. In a tweet shared by the NYSNA last Monday, they demanded a fair contract.

 

Overworked and underpaid

The thousands of nurses involved in the walkout say they have reached their limits. Despite the heavy workload and challenging work environment in healthcare, they are not being compensated enough. Not only that, the nurses are burnt out. They cannot continue working in unsafe conditions, especially since their duties include caring for patients.

New York City Nurses are striking; Here's why + Hospitals affected - 1
Image Courtesy of Andrew Kelly via Reuters
  • One of the things they are highlighting during the picket, which has lasted for over two days now, is that they cannot take care of patients if they cannot take care of themselves. Nurses who are overworked may commit grave mistakes that will put patients’ lives at risk.
  • However, the hospitals involved in the walkout are understaffed, forcing nurses to take on more shifts than they can physically handle.

New York State AFL-CIO president Mario Cilento shared his thoughts on the nurses’ decision to strike. “The hospitals’ treatment of these nurses is proof that all their words of adulation for their healthcare heroes during the pandemic were hollow.”

Affected hospitals have responded to the nurses’ demands

On the same day the nurses went on strike, both hospitals released statements regarding the situation. Both Montefiore Medical Center and Mount Sinai Hospital have offered a 19.1% compounded wage to their nurses. Furthermore, Montefiore has promised to open up over 170 nursing positions to help solve the problem with the current nurse-to-patient ratio.

New York City Nurses are striking; Here's why + Hospitals affected - 5
Image Courtesy of Jeenah Moon via The New York Times

Montefiore Medical Center also said in its statement that they “remain committed to seamless and compassionate care.” As of now, the picket is still ongoing. The local government of New York City is closely monitoring the situation as this strike has greatly affected the healthcare system in the state.

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SOURCES: Reuters, The New York Times
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