Health Care Workers End Strike

Health care workers belonging to the United Public Workers voted to ratify a new three-year contract on April 14, marking the end of a strike that had sent nearly 500 union members walking Feb. 22, nearly two months earlier. The vote was overwhelmingly in favor of ending the strike, with 237 voting for the new contract and 35 opposed. 

The union represents nurses’ aides, respiratory therapists, housekeepers, cooks and other workers at Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital and Lānai Community Hospital. Members had complained that new hires were getting paid more than existing employees and that some staffers were required to work three 16-hour shifts in a row.

The new contract includes at least a 10.5 percent wage increase for all members, an undisclosed lump sum payment and new restrictions on overtime. UPW State Director Kalani Werner called the contract “reflective of the sacrifices our members have made during the strike.” 

“We will do everything we can to ensure future contracts provide adequate pay increases, fair working conditions and demonstrate the importance of our workers,” said Werner. 

Dan Collins