On December 16, 2021 the unions entered an agreement with Kaleida Health administration to permit their recruiters to begin offering a sign-on bonuses to seasoned nurses, new graduate nurses, CMAs, and PCAs.
Kaleida Health was insistent with us that these bonuses were necessary to remain competitive, as Catholic Health is offering a similar sign-on bonus. We demanded that the administration offer some form of compensation to its current employees; the administration modified their proposal to include a bonus for current employees who refer a new staff member to Kaleida Health.
Additionally, we attempted to obtain compensation and relief for our members who have been working in horrible conditions for months, or at the very least to do something to affect the repulsive retention rate; Kaleida administration declined — they feel this recruitment bonus is enough. Kaleida Health would have publicly chastised the union if we were unwilling to sign this agreement.
CWA represents members at Catholic Health where a similar sign-on bonus is being offered. Since the program’s inception about six weeks ago, the hiring incentive has successfully hired just seven people.
We all know that a sign on bonus does little to encourage a person to stay within the system beyond the mandatory period. The unions will be delivering a comprehensive proposal to Kaleida administration that prioritizes retention over recruitment. The current conditions within our system are deteriorating and our system is hemorrhaging employees monthly.
We are all aware of co-workers who have recently left Kaleida. Collective actions will be forthcoming to emphasize the importance to Kaleida administration and your participation will be imperative. We have heard you loud and clear; we appreciate all of your communication expressing horrifying conditions, and willingness to take action.