Striking nurses vote on Allina's latest proposal

Nurses picket outside Abbott Northwestern Hospital
Nurses picket outside Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis on Sept. 5. Striking nurses are voting on Allina Health's latest proposal to get them back to work.
Elizabeth Dunbar | MPR News file

Updated: 9:10 a.m. | Posted: 7:44 a.m.

Thousands of nurses on strike at five Allina Health hospitals in Minnesota are voting on the company's latest proposal to get them back to work.

In two previous votes this summer, union negotiators recommended that members reject Allina's offer. Union leaders haven't directed its 4,800 members on how to vote Monday. Health insurance was the main issue that led to the strike that began Labor Day.

Minnesota Nurses Association spokesperson Rick Fuentes says union negotiators felt that although some progress had been made, the latest offer still falls short because it would force nurses into health insurance plan with a higher deductible and additional out-of-pocket expenses at the end of the three-year contract.

This latest round of voting will be tallied differently to previous votes. Fuentes says nurses' votes at all five Twin Cities' hospitals will be counted together, rather than at separate facilities.

The hospitals affected by the strike include Abbott Northwestern and Phillips Eye Institute in Minneapolis, United in St. Paul, Mercy in Coon Rapids and Unity in Fridley.

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