Labor Relations

Negotiations Recap for November 27, 2012

This recap details the 14th session for the renewal of the collective bargaining agreement between the UW/Harborview and SEIU 1199, and the fifth session to be facilitated by neutral mediators.

SEIU 1199 Presentation

Key Points of SEIU 1199’s Counter-Proposals
Rest Between Shifts
SEIU 1199 proposed expanding the rest between shifts policy covering social workers and health care specialists to include respiratory therapists, medical imaging technologists, anesthesiology technicians, and electroneurodiagnostic technologists.
Break Relief Nurse
SEIU 1199 supplemented its original proposal to create a break relief nurse position, proposing that such nurses be hired for acute care units on the day shift, and that they be eligible for the float premium pay.
Education Support Funds
SEIU 1199 proposed changing how education support funds are pooled for part-time registered nurses, such that unused individual funds would still be pooled and reallocated, but Harborview would no longer have an obligation to supplement the fund with additional money if needed.
Each nurse would have an annual maximum usage of $500.

UW/Harborview Presentation

Key Points of UW/Harborview’s Counter-Proposals
Airlift Northwest
UW/Harborview provided a comprehensive response to SEIU 1199’s theoretical package proposal pertaining specifically to Airlift Northwest issues.

Tentative Agreements

Article 21: Corrective Action/Dismissal Process and/or Resignation
The parties tentatively agreed that Harborview will use the jointly developed general template when conducting a Step A meeting, and it will not be put in the employee’s file.
The parties also tentatively agreed that while management leads the corrective action process, a Registered Nurse 3 may be present during the process, and involved in mentorship, feedback, and evaluations.
Meal and Rest Breaks
The parties tentatively agreed to a memorandum memorializing the parties’ commitment to uninterrupted breaks for employees.
Harborview will collect data on any meal breaks that are not taken in each department or unit, which it will report to the joint labor-management committee to discuss solutions.

Further Dialogue


SEIU 1199 requested clarification on UW/Harborview’s proposal to establish that employees who regularly and voluntarily work in more than one department do not meet the definition of floating.

UW/Harborview pointed out that SEIU 1199’s insistence that all such arrangements must qualify for float pay under the existing policy has prevented some employees from getting the flexible schedule they desire.

UW/Harborview explained that its proposed language would allow for employees who want to work regularly in more than one department at a straight-time rate to do so.


The parties discussed perspectives on what differentiates a preceptor relationship from general orientation.

UW/Harborview explained that a preceptor relationship is typically long term, guided by a defined program, and meant to transform a novice into an expert. General orientation typically involves acquainting an already experienced employee with an unfamiliar environment.

UW/Harborview noted that current utilization of preceptor pay has not always been consistent, and that in order to expand preceptor eligibility to more work groups, the parameters must be better defined.