Hooray! We (tentatively) don’t have to deal with Michael Moore’s blow horn up on North Broad, because the Temple healthcare strike ended last night. And pending some terrible happening during today’s ratification votes (there was one earlier, at 10 a.m., the next is at 3 p.m. and then 7 p.m.), Temple nurses, technologists and other workers will head back to the grind on Friday at 7 p.m.
According to the Inky, everyone seemed to be happy with the deal, including Big 'Ol Bob Brady: “As Temple's chief negotiator, Bob Birnbrauer, signed the last paperwork about 9 p.m. just outside the bar at the Holiday Inn in Old City, happy technologists chanted, "Hey, hey, ho, ho, it's back to work we go," over celebratory martinis.
“Sitting nearby at the hotel where the two sides had been negotiating since Saturday, U.S. Rep. Bob Brady watched the celebrations with a smile.”
Details on what exactly is in the agreement won’t be available until after the ratification over at the Fraternal Order of Police building at 13th and Spring Garden. A message on TempleWatch seems to point in the “We won” direction, though: “We have reached a tentative agreement with Temple! ...The Picket Line is shut down as of now......no picket duty in the morning. Congratulations and Solidarity!”
And while details aren’t provided, “sources close” to these sorts of things love flirting with disaster, don’t they? “The new contract, which expires in October 2013,” writes the Inky, “includes wage increases and provides some tuition reimbursement for dependents, according to sources familiar with it. Both sides declined to detail the terms until the members' meetings Wednesday.”
Bill Cruice, the executive director of the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals had this to say of the union's solidarity: "More than anything, we are a much stronger union than we were 30 days ago, and that will be an important factor for the future -- not only for the nurses and professionals here at Temple, but really for all healthcare professionals in the Philadelphia area."
Without mentioning specifics, Temple Hospital management insists it has been negotiating in good faith with PASNAP for the past nine months.
Michael Moore sent a letter in support of the Temple nurses this week, in which he threatens something truly terrible.
Temple nurses and technical workers return to work tomorrow. Here's what they got after 28 days of striking.