SEIU gives update on Mayo bargaining negotiations

SEIU and Mayo Clinic negotiations latest

SEIU and Mayo Clinic negotiations latest

(ABC 6 News) – Tuesday morning, members from the SEIU (Services Employees International Union) Healthcare Minnesota and Iowa gave an update on negotiations with Mayo Clinic.

The goal is to change working conditions for 1,600 workers at Mayo Clinic Hospital – Saint Marys Campus. Union members say they’ve made good progress on bargaining, but they still have a way to go.

Related – UPDATE: 95% of SEIU MN and IA employees supported new deal

One problem workers say they’re having is to fill in on jobs they’re not necessarily trained to do.

SEIU and Mayo Clinic negotiations latest

SEIU and Mayo Clinic negotiations latest

“Knowledge is the experience. Having good preceptors who are there to answer our questions, to tell us it’s okay to ask questions if you don’t know something. And then, just everybody working as a team to build everybody else up,” said Jennifer Santos Norgren, a sterile processing technician at Saint Marys, and a member of SEIU.

The push for better conditions includes increasing staffing and reducing overtime where they can to decrease burnout. As well as having floating holidays for those who celebrate religious ones. The main thing they’re pushing for is better pay.

“We are fighting for a $20 minimum wage for all union staff at Saint Marys Hospital. We are also looking for pay parity for groups such as PCAs, and sterile processing technicians who are up to $3 an hour less for what people are being paid up in the cities for, for the exact same work,” said Hallie Wallace with SEIU.

Over at the Methodist Campus, SEIU’s deal for a one-year wage opener recently expired. There’s an agreement to extend it with all union workers being covered until there’s a contract deal. Something union works hope Mayo Clinic can also do.

“I think a lot of it is going to be up to, ‘Hey, is the employer starting to move? Are they going to work with us on stuff? We’ll work with them on some stuff.’ It’s basically we’re going to go with the flow here and see how things go,” Santos Norgren added.

Mayo Clinic issued the following statement to ABC 6:

“We are currently in contract discussions with employee groups represented by the SEIU on our Saint Marys campus in Rochester. Mayo and SEIU have agreed to a contract extension, and we are optimistic that we will reach a contract agreement acceptable to all parties.” 

The next bargaining session is set for Thursday.