Stand with nurses in their fight vs. bully

It appears that UPMC’s first order of business since coming to Altoona is to cut benefits and salary of Altoona’s registered nurses while increasing their workload.

Keep in mind that UPMC makes several billion dollars per year, even though they have a nonprofit tax exempt status.

Additionally, their executives make several million dollars per year.

Here are some questions to ask yourself: If UPMC gets what they want from the nurses, what will they do with it? Is UPMC looking to squeeze salary and benefits from doctors, administrators and executives, too? If you’ve ever been hospitalized, who did you see most often and provided you the most care?

Nurses are highly educated and trained professionals who deserve what they have. They are being treated poorly and if they have to strike to protect what they have, they have my support. This situation is like a modern day Robin Hood, but in reverse – the rich stealing from the poor and giving to the rich.

UPMC not only is a health care provider, they are also a health care insurer. I have Blue Cross/Blue Shield for my medical insurance. UPMC’s next move will be to treat only carriers of UPMC health insurance or charge more to non-members. Ladies and gentlemen, a monopoly and bully has come to town.

Who’s going to stop them? The first line of defense is to support the nurses.

Jack Marquis