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NYP-Brooklyn Methodist Nurses Rally in Hundreds to Protest Budget Cuts

With an already overcrowded Emergency Room and a shuttered psychiatric unit, New York Presbyterian-Methodist is proposing to cut nurse staffing even further.
Brooklyn nurses at the picket on May 4. Photo: Provided/NYSNA.

On Thursday, May 4, hundreds of NYSNA nurses from NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital picketed outside of the hospital to protest cuts to care for Brooklyn patients.

“If there’s anything we’ve learned from the pandemic it’s that staffing at the bare minimum means that we aren’t prepared for a crisis," Al Crispino, RN at NYP-Brooklyn Methodist, said.

"Nurses are asking for safe staffing and respect, but NYP-Brooklyn Methodist wants to keep our staffing and pay low. We’re calling on NYP-Brooklyn Methodist to listen to frontline nurses and settle a fair contract now.”

NYSNA nurses at NYP-Brooklyn Methodist, whose union contract expired on April 30th, are fighting for protections from the nurses’ union contract and to protest the proposed reduction of staffing levels in Labor and Delivery, Mother-Baby, Chemotherapy Infusion, and other units. 

“There is a huge need for inpatient mental health care in Brooklyn and throughout New York, but NYP-Brooklyn Methodist refuses to reopen the psych unit they closed during the COVID-19 pandemic," Irving Campbell, RN at NYP-Brooklyn Methodist, said. 

"The loss of these beds has impacted our community and the rest of the hospital — our ER is sometimes crowded with mentally unstable patients who wait in chairs for days for care. We’re calling on NYP-Methodist to deliver the healthcare services and staffing that Brooklyn needs.”

Nurses were joined on the picket line by elected leaders and allies.

“What NYSNA members at NYP-Brooklyn Methodist are asking for is simple — a fair contract that will protect them during their shifts and help provide safer care to patients through better staffing levels, protections that ensure qualified nurses at the bedside of every patient, and fair wages for their dedicated, life-saving work,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. 

“Our city is bleeding out good, dedicated nurses through the unfair treatment and dangerous conditions they are required to work in. I stand with the NYP-Brooklyn Methodist NYSNA members in their demand for a fairer contract.”