Posted: Feb 22, 2013 1:27 PM by KBZK Newsroom
Updated: Feb 22, 2013 2:18 PM
BOZEMAN - Bozeman Deaconess Hospital says contract talks with the union representing nurses have concluded with a tentative agreement.
The hospital says the talks wrapped up at 9:30 p.m. Thursday.
"Both parties invested considerable hours analyzing and evaluating the various points of consideration and found ways to address the concerns of the nurses and the hospital," the hospital said in a prepared release.
Some nurses picketed outside the hospital on Tuesday.
"We're just trying to draw attention to our contract negotiations and some of the issues we feel are really important out here," said nurse James Fredrickson.
When asked about the picketing, Chief Nurse Vickie Groeneweg with the hospital said, "We are fine with it because nurses have the right to have their voices heard."
"We want to correct some of the inequalities that are existing right now and have been for quite some time," says nurse Kristen Mollett. Nurse Lynn Gray agreed, adding, "We just want to see some more respect for our profession, because we come to work and we take care of patients, and it's not about us, it's about the patients."
Despite the picketing, there was no change to operations inside the hospital, because those outside were on their own free time and not away from their jobs inside the hospital.
Hospital officials say expect the union to vote on ratification sometime in the next week. Union members did not immediately return our calls when asked for comment on the tentative agreement.