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Hundreds Of Backus Hospital Nurses Strike In Norwich

NORWICH, CT — Hundreds of Backus Hospital nurses are striking due to a dispute over pay and protective equipment, according to The Hartford Courant. The hospital and the Backus Federation of Nurses have been in contract talks since June.

The strike is expected to last two days.

A statement from the Backus Federation of Nurses reads: “After months of calling the nurses of Backus Hospital ‘heroes,’ management has resisted bargaining a fair contract, and instead chosen to violate our rights under the National Labor Relations Act. We’ve filed Unfair Labor Practice charges calling out Backus managers and Hartford HealthCare (HHC) executives on their intimidation and threatening of nurses for union activity. We’re taking a stand for what we need in these negotiations to be able to work safely during the next wave of this pandemic.”

The nurses’ union is also asking for additional accommodations for breastfeeding.

The hospital said it has offered wage increases of 12.5 percent over the course of the three-year contract, as well as additional time off for most nurses and a 2 percent reduction in health insurance premiums, according to The Courant.

The hospital was recently in the news due to a coronavirus outbreak of nine cases, including cases where nurses tested positive. It is believed this outbreak is linked to an earlier outbreak at Three Rivers Healthcare, a nursing home also in Norwich.

This article originally appeared on the Norwich Patch

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Nurse who has seen ‘hundreds of people suffocating to death’ moved to tears after Trump downplayed coronavirus

Cristina Hops, who works on the frontlines helping patients fighting coronavirus, said she was upset after reading the President’s tweet on Monday, in which he told Americans “don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life.”

“When I read that and I got home, I was just so angry about it that I felt like I needed to say something,” Hops, who is based in Seattle, Washington, told CNN.

So, she made a TikTok video, to share her emotions with the world. “I have seen hundreds of people suffocating to death and for him to say do not be afraid of Covid is astounding, “she says in the video, while tearing up.”How dare he undermine all of the work that we have done as nurses and health care providers?”

Her message resonated — and the video quickly garnered more than 300,000 views on TikTok, as of Thursday evening. It’s been shared across social media platforms, with people lauding the nurse for speaking her mind.

In her experience as a health care worker, Hops said she has seen how a surge in coronavirus cases can drastically impact a community. She was sent to Miami, Florida, over the summer for five weeks to help a hospital with its influx of cases.

“The hospital that I was working at was completely overrun,” she told CNN. “It’s not possible to give everybody the care that they need and deserve when the hospital is that full.”

While Hops doesn’t believe people should live in fear, she said she felt the President’s words were irresponsible and disrespectful given how many people have been personally affected by the virus. More than 7.6 million people — including the President — have contracted coronavirus in the US, and over 212,000 people have died from the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

“People are going to take this (Trump’s words) as everything is okay and it’s not a problem anymore and that’s just not the case,” she said. “It’s just not true.”

Hops said she hopes that those who see her video understand the importance of taking precautions when it comes to the virus.

If the President were to see her video, she said she wants him to realize his experience with the virus does not reflect the experience of every American.

“What’s most important is that we’re taking care of each other and we’re looking out for each other,” she said. “And I don’t feel like his tweet or any of his tweets reflect that.”

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