staff nurse in the ICU

You are a staff nurse in the ICU in one of your city’s two hospitals. You have worked at this hospital for 5 years and transferred to the ICU 2 years ago. You love nursing but are sometimes frustrated in your job due to a short supply of nurses, excessive overtime demands, and the stress of working with such critically ill patients.

The hospital has a closed shop, so union dues are deducted from your pay even though you are not actively involved in the union. The present union contract is up for renegotiation, and union and management have been unable to agree on many issues. When management made its last offer, the new contract was rejected by the nurses. Now that the old contract has expired, nurses are free to strike if they vote to do so.

You had voted for accepting the management offer; you have two children to support, and it would be devastating to be without work for a long time. Last night, the nurses voted on whether to return to the bargaining table and try to renegotiate with management or to go out on strike. Again, you voted for no strike. You have just heard from your friend that the strike vote won. Now, you must decide if you are going to support your striking colleagues or cross the picket line and return to work tomorrow. Your friends are pressuring you to support their cause. You know that the union will provide some financial compensation during the strike but believe that it will not be adequate for you to support yourself and your children. Yo agree with union assertions that the organization has overworked and underpaid you and that it has been generally unresponsive to nursing needs. On the other hand, you believe that your first obligation is your children.

Using a problem-solving and decision making skills model discussed in class outline how you would approach solving this difficult decision. Describe how you arrived at your decision. How many alternatives did you generate? If you were financially stable without a family would your decision have been the same?

 

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