Nurses’ union would benefit Backus patients

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Having worked at The William W. Backus Hospital as a registered nurse in surgical services for 23 years — I recently retired — I’m delighted that the nurses there are organizing a union.

Backus has turned from a family into a corporation. The needs of patients have become secondary to profit. Backus is supposed to be a nonprofit hospital, but a $12 million profit is much more than operating expenses.

People who leave are not being replaced. Ask any nurse and he or she will tell you it’s become very difficult to give good patient care. I support the nurses in their efforts to organize. Despite the rhetoric of an “open-door policy” by the administration, nurses’ opinions and concerns are routinely ignored.

Four years ago, the nurses tried to organize a union and the administration employed an expensive union-busting outfit to stop it. There were mandatory anti-union meetings that people had to attend and many were intimidated by the one-on-one meetings with administration. I hope this time the administration realizes that nurses have a right to organize and Backus should use its money for patient care, not union busting.

DENISE J. KING
Lebanon