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Reader's View: We want patient care before all else

We look forward to seeing our leaders, in person, for the “honest fact-based communication” we know they aspire to engage in.

Reader's View.jpg
We are part of The Trust Project.

We are aware that St. Luke's co-presidents and CEOs Eric Lohn and Nick Van Deelen saw our recent joint press conference with our MNA colleagues at Essentia Twin Ports, expressing our concerns and frustration with the direction that St. Luke's is going when it comes to employee retention, staffing, and patient care (“ St. Luke's nurses vote 'no confidence' toward CEO s,” Aug. 2).

We heard the response of Lohn and Van Deelen at our recent all-employee forum, where they criticized us for exercising our legal rights as both colleagues and patients to express these views and concerns. We saw them claim they want to be engaged with employees to collaboratively solve the challenges we face.

But to this day we have not seen them come to the negotiating table to work with us to solve these challenges or even hear our concerns. We are left to try to get their attention through middle management and intermediaries who insulate them from the real experiences of bedside care staff.

Over the course of three months we have tried to get their attention through petitions, press conferences, and an informational picket. And our attempts have failed. It is because our previous attempts to engage have failed that we have found it necessary to escalate our efforts to get their attention. We will continue to do so internally, in a boardroom, or even on the streets if necessary. Because we want our patient care, not their public image, to come before all else.

We invite Lohn and Van Deelen to join us at the table, as the leaders and decision-makers for our St. Luke's team and to help us address the challenges we experience in our jobs every day and every shift. We look forward to seeing our leaders, in person, for the “honest fact-based communication” we know they aspire to engage in.

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Larissa Hubbartt

Two Harbors

Lorie Olesiak

Hermantown

Bryan Hansen

Hermantown

Becky Bixby

Duluth

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Andrea Rubesch  

Duluth

The writers are members of the St. Luke’s MNA (Minnesota Nurses Association) Negotiating Team.

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