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UIHC caregivers ratify contract, continue fight for fair pay

March 30, 2021

Caregivers at the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics are continuing our fight for fair pay. We’re not letting Iowa’s anti-union laws block the raises needed to keep our quality team together.

In January, just as our contract talks began at the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics, Gov. Kim Reynolds delivered her Condition of the State address. She praised healthcare workers for our “dedication and commitment” during the pandemic. “We cannot sufficiently express our gratitude, but we will try,” Reynolds promised.

Reynolds broke that promise when the state’s negotiators imposed raises for UIHC caregivers of just 1.3 percent this year and next. Iowa’s anti-union laws gave us virtually no legal means to fight that final wage offer. It’s why UIHC members voted to ratify the contract last week. But we all know that the already high turnover of UIHC will skyrocket if those are the only raises we receive.

That’s why we’re going to keep fighting for market-adjustment raises and other improvements that are not in the contract forced on us by Gov. Reynolds’ negotiators. Fortunately, UIHC members now have a vehicle to do that.

The one good thing that came out of the negotiations was a commitment [[LINK TO: “UIHC Labor Management memo” PDF]] from the administration at UIHC and the Iowa Regents to work with us on building an innovative Labor Management Partnership. For the first time ever, we will have a delegate from the Regents’ office who will attend and facilitate the Labor Management Committee meetings.

By expanding and strengthening that Committee, we’ll have a stronger voice to:

- Press for Higher Market-Adjustment Raises

- Win Better Workplace Policies & Conditions

- Pursue Strategies that Promote Retention

Together, we’re going to fight for the fair pay and the fair treatment that every UIHC employee has earned.