Letter in Support of RNs
Email cenobioh@stanford.edu with any questions.

April 9, 2018
Marc Tessier-Lavigne, President Stanford University
Office of the President
Building 10
Stanford University
Stanford, CA 94305-2061
Dear Mr. Marc Tessier-Lavigne, President,

We are the students of Stanford University writing in support of the RNs at Stanford ValleyCare
organizing to join the California Nurses Association. We are disappointed in the decision to use
patient care and Stanford dollars to hire a high-priced union busting firm, IRI. We understand
that at least $3000 is being spent on IRI per nurse; this is unacceptable to us, as tuition fee payers
of the university.

We understand that under IRI’s guidance, the University and medical center are running a hostile
campaign of fear and intimidation. We are aware of: the termination of an RN union leader,
bribes made to nurses, and the multitude of company endorsed anti-union meetings, all in an
effort to convince nurses to vote against the union. As students who have made the decision to
attend Stanford University, we are asking that this misinformation campaign cease immediately
and that RNs be allowed to make a decision regarding the union free from management’s

We firmly believe that tuition fees and public money should NOT be used to prevent anyone
from exercising their legal and human right to organize. We ask that the University immediately
end its anti-union campaign and end its relationship with IRI. We demand that any monies given
to IRI or any other outside consultants be immediately redistributed to RNs and patient care.


-- Some Context --

RNs at Stanford ValleyCare began organizing about 6 months ago with the California Nurses Association (CNA). CNA is the largest all RN union in the country with 150,000 RN members nationwide, 90,000 in CA.

There are several reasons nurses are interested in joining CNA. Among the top issues are the fact that the hospital runs short staffed and in violation of the laws governing nurse to patient staffing in CA. Contributing to the short staffing, RNs are often called and told not to come to work claiming they are not needed-- this leaves the unit lacking the number of nurses necessary to provide care the patients deserve. RNs are also required to work in units they are not trained for, again, causing patient safety concerns. Additionally, since Stanford took over about 2 years ago many cuts have been made, causing nurses to seek work in area hospitals that are already represented by our union. Some of those cuts include a reduction in differentials paid for working unpopular shifts, cuts to retirement, decreased holidays and holiday pay, loss of vacation time and some workers have lost seniority completely which impacts accruals of hospital benefits.

RNs filed to hold their union election and are excited to move forward, the election date is not yet set but we are hoping it takes place sometime in April. The hospital has responded to the nurses’ efforts by hiring high priced “union busters” to threaten, intimidate, spread misinformation and half-truths. About two weeks ago the hospital fired a nurse leader in an attempt to chill their efforts. While most RNs are staying focused on building the union, some are confused by the hospital's dirty tactics.

We hope this letter will show students' support and build confidence in their efforts.

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