I’m writing to ask you to show your support for the striking nurses at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. This Saturday, Veterans Day, will mark the 100th day of the nurses’ strike to win safe nurse-to-patient ratios and fair compensation.
To support the strikers and their contract goals, we’re asking you to send an anniversary card to Mark Manigan, the CEO of RWJBarnabas Health, care of the hospital. Click here to download a pdf with four card options, and print one out. Fold it and write a message on the inside if you’d like. Tape the card closed or put it in an envelope, and address it to: Mark Manigan, RWJBarnabas CEO; c/o RWJ University Hospital, 1 Robert Wood Johnson Pl.; New Brunswick, NJ 08901.
Here are some slogans if you’re looking for ideas of what to write: “Safe staffing saves lives.” “Patients over profits.” “Solidarity with nurses.” You might also include an anecdote about a nurse who has helped you or a family member. You don’t have to sign the card, but please send these through the mail. They will arrive late, but they will arrive, and that will show the hospital that the community is on the side of the nurses.
We have been working with unions and community groups to support the nurses in their fight to have safe-staffing ratios enshrined in their contract. RWJBarnabas has responded to the strike by trying to bust their union. The hospital had already spent $72.6 million on replacement nurses as of the end of September, and the striking nurses—who were hailed as health care heroes during the pandemic—had their health insurance cut off months ago.
If RWJ Barnabas gets away with resisting the nurses’ demand for safe staffing and breaking their union, the medical facilities many of us use across New Jersey will suffer. Please show your support for the nurses’ just demands by sending an anniversary card to Mark Manigan!
Department Rep, Rutgers AAUP-AFT, and Assistant Teaching Professor, New Brunswick Writing Program