Victory at Phelps Hospital

June 14, 2024

Victory at Phelps_1199 Mag.jpgMembers at Phelps Hospital reached a tentative agreement at 5:13 a.m. in the morning on May 30th, narrowly averting a one-day strike planned for the following day.

The agreement wich includes substantial wage increases–retroactive to April 2023–brings the members at the Sleepy Hollow, NY, facility onto a par with their 1199SEIU co-workers at other Northwell Health facilities.

“Nine hundred caregivers standing together are more powerful than any of us standing alone—and that’s how we won so much,” said Anne Moss, an 1199 RN in the intensive care unit who has worked at the hospital since 2011, “Caring for our patients is our top priority and we are looking forward to working collaboratively with management to strengthen patient care.”

The 238-bed Phelps Hospital is part of Northwell Health which is New York State's largest healthcare provider and private employer.

In June 2022, approximately 900 Phelps Hospital caregivers including registered nurses, certified nursing assistants; housekeeping staff, food service workers, and others voted to form a union with 1199SEIU. Tens of thousands of 1199SEIU members at other Northwell facilities, including nearby Northern Westchester Hospital, already have strong 1199SEIU contracts.

1199ers at Phelps demonstrated their solidarity for many months to bargain a strong first contract, which is modeled after the pattern established by 1199SEIU’s master contract with the League of Voluntary Hospitals and Homes of New York, and also includes no-cost family health insurance and secure pensions.

Other highlights of the agreement are employer paid childcare and education funds, job security provisions, and language ensuring that frontline caregivers will have meaningful input in developing staffing guidelines to ensure the best possible patient care.

As this edition was going to press members were planning to hold a ratification vote in early June.