TUNKHANNOCK, Pa. — Hospital workers at Tyler Memorial Hospital near Tunkhannock went on strike, hoping to bring awareness to what they say are unfair conditions.
They say they have been without a contract since February, and staffing issues are beginning to affect patient care.
"To put it simply, the hospital has broken the law. They are bargaining in bad faith there, and they're not bargaining fairly. They're giving us the runaround at this point now that our contract has expired. They're only offering us maybe one day a month to come to the table to try to negotiate a fair contract," said Danielle Adams, a worker at Tyler Memorial Hospital.
Patricia McKinney is a registered nurse and has been working at Tyler Memorial Hospital for 40 years and says things have never gotten to this point.
"All we wanted was fair labor practices, and they couldn't comply with that, and that has put us out here where we are right now," McKinney said.
Even with snowflakes flying, these hospital workers say it was important to be out n the picket line to show how much they care about the community.
"We love the community that we serve, and we want to better our hospital for them, and a lot of times that's going to take it out of the hospital investing in different things for us," Adams said.
"We have each other's backs. We always have. We work as a unit. We help each other out when we need to help each other out. That's what we're all about. That's what the positive small rural community hospitals are all about," McKinney said.
Newswatch 16 also reached out to Commonwealth Health System, who sent this statement.
"Tyler Memorial Hospital is continuing to provide quality care for its patients today. Teams of highly qualified, experienced, temporary replacement staff are working to ensure uninterrupted care for patients."
Hospital workers plan to continue the strike until Friday evening.