Still no contract for Providence nurses

EVERETT — After six months of negotiation, contract talks between Providence Regional Medical Center Everett and 1,400 registered nurses remain deadlocked.

The two sides have been unable to come to an agreement despite working with a federal mediator.

Tuesday afternoon, nurses plan informational picketing on the hospital’s two Everett campuses. A rally is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at the main hospital at 1700 13th Ave.

Union representatives say the major issue is a need for more staffing. Like other metro Puget Sound hospitals, Providence has seen significant increases in the number of people hospitalized and emergency room patients.

Providence says it has added about 80 nurses since January to help meet demand.

The nurses are represented by the United Food and Commercial Workers union. At the rally Tuesday, they are expected to be joined by Everett firefighters and representatives from two big Boeing unions, the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA) and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), said UFCW spokesman Tom Geiger.

“We’re not on strike,” Geiger said. “There hasn’t been a recommendation for a strike vote yet. But an informational picket is sort of one step short of that.”

Danielle Percival, a union member who works as a head nurse on the night shift, said neither side in the dispute wants a strike. Percival said she hopes the union events Tuesday help convince the hospital that the community supports the nurses.

Barbara Hyland-Hill, Providence’s chief nursing officer, said the hospital “will do everything in our power to avoid a strike.”

Anyone needing health services at the hospital shouldn’t be concerned that the contract dispute will affect their care, Hyland-Hill said.

The nurses’ contract expired Oct. 31. There have been 15 negotiating sessions and several temporary contract extensions, the last of which expired Feb. 27. The union had hoped for a breakthrough during a negotiating session earlier this month, Geiger said. “Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.”

No additional bargaining sessions have been scheduled, but a federal mediator has been asked to set a date for more talks, Hyland-Hill said.

The union has suggested having someone from outside the hospital help mediate staffing issues. The hospital feels it has measures in place to address the issues in a timely way, Hyland-Hill said.

“This is really about collaboration with our nurses.”

The hospital has offered three years of wage increases. Nurses would get a about a 5.5 percent raise the first year, about 5.25 percent the second year and about 5.5 percent the third year.

Percival said union members generally are satisfied with that offer.

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486;

Talk to us

More in Local News

Students arriving off the bus get in line to score some waffles during a free pancake and waffle breakfast at Lowell Elementary School on Friday, May 26, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
800 free pancakes at Everett’s Lowell Elementary feed the masses

The annual breakfast was started to connect the community and the school, as well as to get people to interact.

Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring speaks at the groundbreaking event for the I-5/SR 529 Interchange project on Tuesday, May 23, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$123M project starting on Highway 529 interchange, I-5 HOV lane

A reader wondered why the highway had a lane closure despite not seeing work done. Crews were waiting on the weather.

Justin Bell was convicted earlier this month of first-degree assault for a December 2017 shooting outside a Value Village in Everett. (Caleb Hutton / Herald file)
Court: Snohomish County jurors’ opaque masks didn’t taint verdict

During the pandemic, Justin Bell, 32, went on trial for a shooting. Bell claims his right to an impartial jury was violated.

Gary Fontes uprights a tree that fell over in front of The Fontes Manor — a miniature handmade bed and breakfast — on Friday, May 12, 2023, at his home near Silver Lake in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Everett’s mini-Frank Lloyd Wright builds neighborhood of extra tiny homes

A tiny lighthouse, a spooky mansion and more: Gary Fontes’ miniature world of architectural wonders is one-twelfth the size of real life.

Will Steffener
Inslee appoints Steffener as Superior Court judge

Attorney Will Steffener will replace Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Janice Ellis, who is retiring in June.

News logo for use with stories about Mill Creek in Snohomish County, WA.
Police: Mill Creek man fatally stabbed wife amid financial woes

After quitting his job at Amazon, the man amassed about $50,000 in debt, triggering a discussion about finances, he told police.

Outside of the current Evergreen Recovery Centers' housing to treat opioid-dependent moms with their kids on Thursday, May 25, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$8M in behavioral health grants to benefit children, youth, families

Snohomish County awarded one-time federal funding to five projects that will reach at least 440 new people each year.

Cooper Cummings from the United States celebrates after winning a men's downhill during the Cheese Rolling contest at Cooper's Hill in Brockworth, Gloucestershire, Monday May 29, 2023. The Cooper's Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake is an annual event where participants race down the 200-yard (180 m) long hill chasing a wheel of double gloucester cheese. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
Arlington High School grad is the big cheese after winning UK race

Cooper Cummings, who grew up in Lake Stevens, defeated a world record-holder in Cooper’s Hill Cheese Rolling and Wake.

Marysville firefighters respond to a 12-year-old boy who fell down a well Tuesday May 30, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Photo provided by Marysville Fire District)
Marysville firefighters save boy who fell 20 feet into well

The 12-year-old child held himself up by grabbing on to a plastic pipe while firefighters worked to save him.

Most Read