Worcester Nurses Strike
In 1997, for-profit Tenet Healthcare bought St. Vincent’s Hospital and began a two-year negotiation with nurses that lead to a 49 day strike in the Spring of 2000.
After joining them on the picket line and supporting them for 49 days, Senator Kennedy invited all parties to Washington and put one group in one room and another in a room down the hall and began a day of shuttle diplomacy that lead to an agreement and that broke the strike. Senator Kennedy’s direct involvement and extensive knowledge of the issues was what finally helped an agreement to be reached. The language that he developed on mandatory overtime was later used in many nursing union contracts around the country – including in the 2001 Brockton nurses strike that went for over 100 days the next year.
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