Tyler Memorial Hospital employees to strike for next three days

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TUNKHANNOCK TOWNSHIP, WYOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Dozens of Tyler Memorial Hospital staff are picketing for the next three days.

Union workers were out since 7 o’clock Wednesday morning, striking because of “unfair labor practices.”

Dozens of Tyler Memorial Hospital workers marched to Route 6 to make their voices heard.

“We’ve really put in the work. We’ve put in all the blood, sweat and tears that we could, to come to a fair union contract and they just refuse to bargain,” said Melissa Teetsel.

She is one of 80 employees at the hospital being represented by Service Employees International Union or SEIU.

“Our contracts ended on February 28th and we are still without one. The hospital is not bargaining fairly. They refuse to come to an agreement,” said Danielle Adams, a nutrition service tech at the hospital.

She sits on the bargaining committee and says contract negotiations started in January.

“We’re asking for obviously fair wages, health and safety language and such in our contract. But unfortunately with the way the hospital is bargaining we can’t even scratch the surface of these issues,” she said.

The hospital did not comment on the ongoing contract negotiations. A spokeswoman tells Eyewitness News:

“A contingency operations plan will be implemented, in the event the strike does occur, to ensure continuation of quality services. As always, our top priority is the care and safety of our patients, employees and visitors.”

Tyler Memorial Hospital

“We do want to raise awareness and bring awareness to what is going on within the hospital and we’re hoping maybe that CHS (Commonwealth Health System) will open their eyes and come to the table and bargain with us,” said Adams.

Hospital workers plan to be out there out there 12 hours each day of the strike.

“Everybody has turned up and they’re all standing out here and support each other and I think that’s great,” said Teetsel.

The three day strike will come to an end Friday evening with the intent of staff returning to work on Saturday. As for the first day, employees are moving around the hospital grounds doing different striking activities.

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