This week, more than a thousand service and clerical workers at Allegheny General Hospital (AGH) voted overwhelmingly to ratify their first contract with the hospital, working with management to settle a fair contract that moves workers, the hospital, and all of Pittsburgh forward.
Having only organized less than a year ago, this is not just a historic accomplishment for these workers, but a validation of the growing movement of workers from Pittsburgh’s largest hospitals. These workers are holding our state’s largest employers accountable to rebuild our middle class and contribute to the health and wellness of all residents in the region.
This is the first major group of hospital workers in the city of Pittsburgh to have a union contract and they couldn’t be more excited.
“For the first time, we have a voice at AGH,” said Darlene Nicholson, a lab processor at the hospital. “And we’ve seen that they have already started to listen and work with us.”
The new contract makes real progress for workers and the hospital by ensuring fair raises and affordable health care for everyone, a secure defined benefit pension, job security and a stronger voice in improving patient care.
The agreement solidifies the commitment of frontline staff and management to work together to improve the already great care that AGH provides.
Some highlights of the new contracts include:
- Guaranteed raises for every worker (average of 9.3% over two years);
- Wage caps removed;
- Respect for workers’ right to organize and bargain;
- Caps on healthcare costs; and
- A stronger voice in improving patient care
These raises move the average wage for AGH employees above $15 an hour by the end of the year — a full three years ahead of UPMC’s promised wage increase.
Workers across the Allegheny Health Network will continue to bargain new contracts in the coming months and this unprecedented partnership between AGH management and workers will only serve to inspire and encourage more success.
Congratulations to all of these workers for making history once again and for making a tremendous impact on their community, both now and in the future!