Prayer vigil set as hospital talks resume

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As Twin Cities hospital workers head back to the bargaining table, the Twin Cities Religion and Labor Network will hold a prayer vigil for a fair settlement of the long-running negotiations. The vigil will be Monday, July 24, at 5:30 p.m., in front of North Memorial Medical Center, 3300 Oakdale Ave. N., Robbinsdale.

Over 3,300 members of Service Employees International Union Local 113 who work in five Twin Cities hospital systems, including Fairview, HealthEast, North Memorial, Methodist, and Children’s, began working without a contract on March 10. Negotiators will go back to the bargaining table Tuesday, about a month after the last round of talks ended.

The Religion and Labor Network has invited a coalition of religious, elected and community leaders to “pray with workers for a settlement that makes healthcare more affordable for the people who work in our hospitals,” organizers said.

“Our primary concern has always been, and continues to be, making health care more affordable for the people who work in our hospitals because we can do a better job of providing quality health care for our patients when we have coverage for our own families,” Local 113 said.

“Meanwhile, members of SEIU Local 113 at Allina Hospitals & Clinics continue on their journey of a new contract and strategic alliance that makes a commitment to moving toward full employer-paid health insurance and makes workers part of the decision-making process in the important decisions related to their jobs. This strategic alliance represents a new approach to improving quality care and making Allina the best place to work and the best place to get care in the Twin Cities.

“As we head back to the bargaining table on July 25, we will continue to work to negotiate a contract that makes health care more affordable for hospital workers.”