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(Washington Post)   DC hospital fires 11 nurses for not owning SUVs   (washingtonpost.com) divider line 185
    More: Stupid, Washington Hospital Center, snowstorms, class action, AWOL, emergency services, weekdays, nurses, snow emergency  
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31424 clicks; posted to Main » on 28 Feb 2010 at 4:44 PM (4 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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ZAZ [TotalFark]
2010-02-28 01:23:49 PM  
Union representatives said about 250 of the hospital's 1,600 nurses did not make their shifts at some point

And 11, but only 11, of them had bosses who didn't like them? Something's funny about this story.
 
2010-02-28 01:49:24 PM  
ZAZ: And 11, but only 11, of them had bosses who didn't like them? Something's funny about this story.

not enough info. Maybe they didn't turn up after the roads were cleared and they were just milking some extra days off?
 
2010-02-28 02:13:06 PM  
You want a union that will set exact rules by which employers have to treat employees, and make life miserable when the letter of those rules are not kept? Then you live by those rules, and too damn bad. Nobody is crying big fat tears for employers' difficulties that make THEIR adherence to the union contract problematic.
 
2010-02-28 02:22:20 PM  
Father Jack Hacket: not enough info. Maybe they didn't turn up after the roads were cleared and they were just milking some extra days off?

Or possibly failed to call in and advise that they would be absent.

I agree, not enough info. Since there is talk of a lawsuit, nothing solid will likely come from the hospital until they speak in court.
 
2010-02-28 03:08:54 PM  
Some people use any excuse to not go to work,

Look it is raining, well I better stay home...

Look the Sun came up in the East, well since I drive east in the morning I cant possibly make it in to work now....

//No problems getting round in my F150 4x4....
 
2010-02-28 04:17:44 PM  
Father Jack Hacket: not enough info. Maybe they didn't turn up after the roads were cleared and they were just milking some extra days off?

I don't think we read the same article:

"Ricks was scheduled to work Feb. 8, but looked at her unplowed street in Upper Marlboro the previous afternoon and knew she was likely to miss her shift. "My husband had gotten the driveway clear, but that was as far as we could go," she said.

She said she called the hospital to explain her situation and reported to work Feb. 9, as soon as her street was passable. On Feb. 10, she spent the night at the hospital to ensure a second storm wouldn't cause her to miss work the next day.

She was dismissed, effective last Tuesday."
 
2010-02-28 04:23:52 PM  
Father Jack Hacket: not enough info. Maybe they didn't turn up after the roads were cleared and they were just milking some extra days off?

Further, for those of you who didn't RTA:

"Washington Hospital Center's "Declared Weather (Or Other) Emergency" policy, does not mention termination as a consequence for failing to get to work. It does state: "Unscheduled absences and late arrivals occurring during a declared weather emergency are not counted when addressing attendance issues, nor are authorized early departures." "

The hospital doesn't have a leg to stand on.

With that said, I'd rather not work for a place that will fire people with decades of time there for being late during a blizzard.
 
2010-02-28 04:48:12 PM  
You can always call the police (NOT 911... I repeat, NOT 911. The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

No excuse for not going to work.
 
2010-02-28 04:48:48 PM  
Fortunately, there is a nursing shortage.
She'll find something else.

Hopefully for more money, and better bosses.
 
2010-02-28 04:48:59 PM  
If they're RNs, they can get a better-paying position in any state immediately, with many hospitals paying their moving expenses and/or signing bonuses.
 
2010-02-28 04:51:24 PM  
The_Ancient: Some people use any excuse to not go to work,

Look it is raining, well I better stay home...

Look the Sun came up in the East, well since I drive east in the morning I cant possibly make it in to work now....

//No problems getting round in my F150 4x4....


Umm, OK. Glad you used this thread to tell us about your truck. Cool personal fact, bro.
 
2010-02-28 04:52:18 PM  
My friend is a nurse, she had to go in the night before the storms and sleep at the hospital. She was there for 3 days straight. She would have been working anyways, but she could not leave the hospital after her shift.

They told people ahead of time, if you don't come in, you could be fired.
 
2010-02-28 04:52:31 PM  
SchlingFocker: With that said, I'd rather not work for a place that will fire people with decades of time there for being late during a blizzard.

Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

Take care of current patients, handle incoming, whatever. If you aren't there, who is going to do it? The person who has already been there 14 hours?
 
2010-02-28 04:54:05 PM  
The_Ancient: Some people use any excuse to not go to work,

Look it is raining, well I better stay home...

Look the Sun came up in the East, well since I drive east in the morning I cant possibly make it in to work now....

//No problems getting round in my F150 4x4....



Sorry about your penis...

/penis
 
2010-02-28 04:54:28 PM  
RazorRex: The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

Being a nurse does not automatically make you an emergency worker.

And, again, the hospital policy says that unscheduled absences or late arrivals during weather emergencies are not counted in regard to attendance issues.

rogue49: Fortunately, there is a nursing shortage.
She'll find something else.


A nursing shortage doesn't always correlate with an ability of the hospitals to afford to hire nurses.

Competition for nursing jobs here in Houston is VERY intense. Metric shiat-tons of applicants for very few open positions. The hospitals NEED lots of nurses, but they can't afford to hire the nurses.
 
2010-02-28 04:54:33 PM  
They're NOT being fired for not owning SUVs. They ARE being fired for failing to simply WALK to work. You work at a HOSPITAL, people. Suck it, walk to work, get treated for hypothermia and frostbite (toes are VERY easy to amputate... it's practically outpatient work) and DO YOUR JOB.
 
2010-02-28 04:54:38 PM  
vernonFL: They told people ahead of time, if you don't come in, you could be fired.

Doesn't make it any more reasonable, especially in the face of hospital policy stating severe weather didn't count.
 
2010-02-28 04:55:13 PM  
Frankly, I think the hospital's stance is surprising - because when the next big snow storm comes around and an employee has an accident on the way to work, they're going to turn around and sue the hospital (and rightly so) claiming they felt they had no choice but to ignore the dangerous conditions so they wouldn't be fired...

Suggesting the individual doesn't have the right to choose whether or not it is safe to come to work is - pun intended - rather a slippery road.

Stating that the few should be punished because the majority made it in is a very, very flawed argument given that not everybody lives the same distance away, has to drive down roads with identical conditions (time since last plowing / salting, slope grade, surface material and perhaps texturing to provide grip, etc.), nor does everyone drive the same vehicle types. What's safe for 99.5% of people might be extremely dangerous for the remaining 0.5%.

The amount of snow we've had in East Tennessee lately is nothing compared to what other areas have had, and due to the grade of a couple of local roads here (and the fact that the city didn't bother to clear them for a day or two after the worst of the snow), I *still* found myself among quite a few folks unable to drive home, and had to turn around and limp back to the nearest safe place to leave my vehicle, then walk a mile back home in the snow at night. So I do know of what I speak regarding the potential dangers.
 
2010-02-28 04:55:20 PM  
YouPeopleAreCrazy: SchlingFocker: With that said, I'd rather not work for a place that will fire people with decades of time there for being late during a blizzard.

Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

Take care of current patients, handle incoming, whatever. If you aren't there, who is going to do it? The person who has already been there 14 hours?



I've been there. I worked for a private ambulance service that had one whole shift go on strike. I had already pulled a 72 hour shift, I had to work another 24. Everyone on that shift was fired.

/cool story, bro
 
2010-02-28 04:56:24 PM  
Diana Fyer: //No problems getting round in my F150 4x4....


Sorry about your penis...


No doubt. Must suck to need a full-size truck just to lug the thing around. At a certain point you really need to start considering reduction surgery.
 
2010-02-28 04:58:13 PM  
RazorRex: You can always call the police (NOT 911... I repeat, NOT 911. The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

No excuse for not going to work.


Getting stuck is not the only hazard. It's just as likely you could end up having an accident that could at the very least result in significant property damage, and quite possibly fatalities.

Nor is one guaranteed safety by the quality of one's own driving and the type / condition of one's own vehicle. There's every chance no matter how careful you are that some other idiot will take your life because they don't know how to drive safely in bad conditions.
 
2010-02-28 04:59:09 PM  
vernonFL: My friend is a nurse, she had to go in the night before the storms and sleep at the hospital. She was there for 3 days straight. She would have been working anyways, but she could not leave the hospital after her shift.

They told people ahead of time, if you don't come in, you could be fired.


Those are known as "ride out teams". You're designated in advance, and you are required to show up well in advance of the storm.

That wasn't the case here.

YouPeopleAreCrazy: Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

This is why you have charge nurses, float nurses, etc. In case someone is a few hours late.

AND, the hospital policy specifically stated that weather emergencies preclude disciplinary action for being late or absent.
 
2010-02-28 04:59:56 PM  
The_Ancient: Some people use any excuse to not go to work,

Look it is raining, well I better stay home...

Look the Sun came up in the East, well since I drive east in the morning I cant possibly make it in to work now....

//No problems getting round in my F150 4x4....


I'm gonna assume you're one of those people who keep the manufacturer of Truck Nuts in business.

/Get 'Er Done.
 
2010-02-28 05:02:09 PM  
They didn't lose their jobs because they didn't own SUVs. They lost their jobs because of Global Warming!!
 
2010-02-28 05:03:39 PM  
RazorRex: You can always call the police (NOT 911... I repeat, NOT 911. The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

No excuse for not going to work.


This. My buddy is a medic at a jail and had to do exactly that.
 
pla
2010-02-28 05:03:48 PM  
FTA: Washington Hospital Center's "Declared Weather (Or Other) Emergency" policy, does not mention termination as a consequence for failing to get to work. It does state: "Unscheduled absences and late arrivals occurring during a declared weather emergency are not counted when addressing attendance issues, nor are authorized early departures."

They actually have a policy on the books exempting absences during weather emergencies? Pure gold. This hospital better budget a few million for the wave of lawsuits in which they will get their butt handed to them.
 
2010-02-28 05:03:53 PM  
rogue49: Fortunately, there is a nursing shortage.
She'll find something else.

Hopefully for more money, and better bosses.


Two years ago maybe. Now, even hospitals are laying off nurses and have hiring freezes. There is actually a glut of nurse right now, considering the number of new grads who can't find work.

That being said, a lot of hospitals are using travel nurses and PRN to augment their staff. You can make a good deal of money as a travel or per-diem nurse.
 
2010-02-28 05:04:36 PM  
YouPeopleAreCrazy:
SchlingFocker: With that said, I'd rather not work for a place that will fire people with decades of time there for being late during a blizzard.

Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

Take care of current patients, handle incoming, whatever. If you aren't there, who is going to do it? The person who has already been there 14 hours?


If hospital administrators cared about that, they wouldn't be laying off staff so they can cut staffing costs and end up with a nice $100,000 bonus by making a single nurse look after 16 critically ill patients. This sort of shiat happens all the time. Get the warm body required so you can't get prosecuted and work them to death so the older experience nurses all leave and you are left with a bunch of newbies who don't know what they are doing half the time, because they haven't got the experience on the floor.

The idea that they are doing what is best for the patient might happen in a few hospitals but none around here in NC that I had experience with, and that would be about twenty or so.
 
2010-02-28 05:04:44 PM  
ZAZ: And 11, but only 11, of them had bosses who didn't like them? Something's funny about this story.

Firing 250 nurses is harder than firing 11. Of those 11, some may have had bosses that didn't like them, some may have had bosses who didn't know they were allowed to show any discretion, and (the usual suspect) some may have held jobs that the hospital wanted to eliminate but couldn't do it cheaply under the terms of the contract.

RazorRex: You can always call the police (NOT 911... I repeat, NOT 911. The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

Even if that were true in DC, not all nurses are emergency workers, and the police can run out of people or vehicles during a huge snowstorm.

bronyaur1: You want a union that will set exact rules by which employers have to treat employees, and make life miserable when the letter of those rules are not kept? Then you live by those rules, and too damn bad. Nobody is crying big fat tears for employers' difficulties that make THEIR adherence to the union contract problematic.

One way to get out from under those rules is to break them en masse and then make putting the situation right a bargaining chip in the next contract negotiation. FTFA: The union is scheduled to begin negotiations with the hospital on a new contract Monday.

But yeah, it's probably Jimmy Hoffa's fault.
 
2010-02-28 05:04:54 PM  
RazorRex: You can always call the police (NOT 911... I repeat, NOT 911. The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

No excuse for not going to work.


While that may be true in Indiana, it may not be true in DC.
 
2010-02-28 05:05:52 PM  
YouPeopleAreCrazy: Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

Take care of current patients, handle incoming, whatever. If you aren't there, who is going to do it? The person who has already been there 14 hours?


So you're saying that they don't get sick/personal days?
 
2010-02-28 05:07:08 PM  
limeyfellow: If hospital administrators cared about that, they wouldn't be laying off staff so they can cut staffing costs and end up with a nice $100,000 bonus by making a single nurse look after 16 critically ill patients.

Hyperbole FTW!
 
2010-02-28 05:08:23 PM  
stupid. very, very stupid.
 
2010-02-28 05:08:28 PM  
Here's what I really think happened: She's probably a crusty, mean old nurse that was on the brink of getting fired anyway. They probably have a file an inch and a half thick on her. Hospitals are scared shiatless of getting accused of racism in firing so there's no way she got fired based on one incident. Now she's being a pain and going to the media. Hopefully the hospital won't give in and will instead parade her dirty file full of complaints into court for all to see and will win the suit. Unfortunately the lawyers will win the mo$t.
 
2010-02-28 05:08:56 PM  
RazorRex: You can always call the police (NOT 911... I repeat, NOT 911. The police always have a non-emergency number) and they will come get you if you are an emergency worker.

No excuse for not going to work.


I don't know how it is in DC, but right now I live in Baltimore, and we got the same storm. The cops here don't have chains, the snowplows don't go down ANY street that isn't a main road, and the buses don't run until after the roads are plowed. Unless the cops send out the chopper to pick up emergency workers (unlikely, I didn't hear a single chopper while the snow was falling, and this being Baltimore there's ALWAYS a police helicopter overhead), I think that you're full of it.
 
2010-02-28 05:09:02 PM  
Ihopethisnamewillfi: YouPeopleAreCrazy: Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

Take care of current patients, handle incoming, whatever. If you aren't there, who is going to do it? The person who has already been there 14 hours?

So you're saying that they don't get sick/personal days?


Yep, just like wait staff in restaurants which just happens to be another one of those places where people have to be there. Of course, restaurant managers are usually smart enough to plan ahead and have call ins if needs be. Oh, and they don't have to deal with union rules.
 
2010-02-28 05:09:39 PM  
I know of hospitals that have systems for owners of 4x4s, usually other employees or their spouses, to pick-up other employees on their way to work so they are fully staffed. Sounds like poor thinking/planning on the hospital's part.
 
2010-02-28 05:09:53 PM  
I think the hospital wanted to cut down on staff so they are just using the snowstorm as an ostensible reason.
 
2010-02-28 05:09:57 PM  
Whoa, slow down there, champs. Frequently it's in your contract as a medical care provider that you WILL show up-they even ask what kind of car you drive so you can bring others in. If you don't have a car that can make it, they'll assign you to someone who lives nearby that does.

There's reason for this-as a medical person, your absence-particularly in a weather emergency-can mean people are going to die. Fortunately I'm in research, so I don't have to come in, but they have it on file what kind of car I have and where I live so I can ferry people in if they're desperate.

These nurses-it does sound like some of them have got hard-ass supervisors, but those are nurses for you-they eat their own.

But I think it's perfectly reasonable to adhere to your contract in this case-particularly if the hospital has set up other ride-in options, which most of them do.
 
pla
2010-02-28 05:11:23 PM  
RazorRex : No excuse for not going to work.

Oh, give it a rest, Mr. Hardarse Capitalist. When you can't get to work, you can't get to work. The police had better things to do than play taxi for a handful of nurses snowed in.



YouPeopleAreCrazy : Problem is, a hospital is one of those rare places where people have to be there.

Why? Because people might die?

Hey, news for ya - I value my life over yours. Hell will get pretty chilly before I risk my life to go to work to deal with stubbed toes and welfare moms demanding antibiotics for little Jimmy's earache.

And hey, this happened in DC! With any luck, a few of the real scum of our country might have died with no one around to save their sorry butts.
 
2010-02-28 05:12:03 PM  
zekebullseye: Here's what I really think happened: She's probably a crusty, mean old nurse that was on the brink of getting fired anyway. They probably have a file an inch and a half thick on her.

I see you missed the part in the article where, out of all the personnel files they've examined so far, none of the nurses fired had disciplinary problems.
 
2010-02-28 05:12:04 PM  
I wonder if they were paid hourly instead of salaried they would have tried a little harder to find a way in to work.
 
2010-02-28 05:13:40 PM  
Get to work biatches...

www.cbc.ca
 
2010-02-28 05:14:32 PM  
crazywisdom_uk: But I think it's perfectly reasonable to adhere to your contract in this case

The only contract we know of in this case is the hospital policy stating that absences and late arrivals during weather emergencies are not subject to discipline.

Lockemallup: I wonder if they were paid hourly instead of salaried they would have tried a little harder to find a way in to work.

Christ, aren't you a farking moron?
 
2010-02-28 05:14:42 PM  
pla: ...I value my life over yours. Hell will get pretty chilly before I risk my life to go to work to deal with stubbed toes and welfare moms demanding antibiotics for little Jimmy's earache...

Now that's just hyperbole; haven't you heard? Poor people dint already get free medical care. that's why we're gonna spend all of our money on Obama-care.

/Sorry, couldn't resist. Carry on.
 
2010-02-28 05:15:15 PM  
Ihopethisnamewillfi: So you're saying that they don't get sick/personal days?

Nope, not saying that at all. But then again the entire shift does not take a sick day at the same time.
 
2010-02-28 05:15:39 PM  
vernonFL: My friend is a nurse, she had to go in the night before the storms and sleep at the hospital. She was there for 3 days straight. She would have been working anyways, but she could not leave the hospital after her shift.

They told people ahead of time, if you don't come in, you could be fired.


That sounds like what might be going on--they were told what was needed to ensure they could be at work and they didn't comply.
 
2010-02-28 05:18:11 PM  
YouPeopleAreCrazy: Ihopethisnamewillfi: So you're saying that they don't get sick/personal days?

Nope, not saying that at all. But then again the entire shift does not take a sick day at the same time.


So before calling into work, they're supposed to call their coworkers and see if anybody else is taking a day off?
 
2010-02-28 05:18:15 PM  
pla: Hey, news for ya - I value my life over yours. Hell will get pretty chilly before I risk my life to go to work to deal with stubbed toes and welfare moms demanding antibiotics for little Jimmy's earache.

If driving in the snow is 'risking your life', you suck at driving.

Please stay off the road.

/refreshing the meds for a cancer patient > little Jimmy's earache
 
2010-02-28 05:20:09 PM  
YouPeopleAreCrazy: But then again the entire shift does not take a sick day at the same time.

This is why hospitals have ride out teams, to ensure minimal staffing requirements in the event that the rest of the staff can't make it due to weather.

These nurses were not on ride out teams.

You also seem to be ignoring the hospital policy which states that the nurses aren't subject to discipline for absence or late arrival during a weather emergency.
 
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