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Nurses unionizing no help to patient care

While I’m disappointed at the all too obvious pro-union bias of the article, “Group of Johns Hopkins nurses say hospital fails to address patient care concerns” (Dec. 3), I’m not surprised. As a registered nurse with more than 40 years of experience from the bedside to nursing management and education, let me provide you with two statistics your reporter and editor conveniently overlooked.

Let’s begin with the reported 175 nurse respondents to the National Nurses United survey. When one considers that there’s an estimated 3,200 RNs at John Hopkins eligible for the bargaining unit, 175 respondents represent a paltry 5.47 percent of eligible nurses. What, I may ask, happened to the other 3,025 nurses? Could it be that the NNU leadership was afraid to get a larger sampling in case it might skew the “all John Hopkins” nurses want a union story that they’re prompting?

Not that long ago, the NNU and California Nurses Association tried to unionize our local hospital in Pasadena. The NNU/CNA was successful in getting our city council, other elected officials and other community leaders to demand, as Councilwoman Shannon Sneed is demanding, that the hospital remain neutral and “just let the nurses vote.” However, what the NNU/CNA didn’t count on was that nearly every eligible RN would vote and turn down the union. A majority of our nurses voted no, but even that wasn’t good enough with the NNU/CNA as they lodged one National Labor Relations Board complaint after another in an attempt to alter the outcome. Why? Because in the end, it wasn’t about just letting the nurses vote — it was about unionizing yet another hospital and collecting dues, not about providing better care.

Genevièrve M. Clavreul, Pasadena, Calif.

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