The law firm for a union representing licensed practical nurses (LPNs) in New York City sent a cease-and-desist letter to Montefiore Medical Center alleging the health care system involuntarily redeployed LPNs to replace striking nurses in violation of their collective bargaining agreement.
In a letter sent Tuesday to Montefiore’s vice president of employee and labor relations, which was obtained by CNN, the general counsel for 1199SEIU said the deployment of its members is “inappropriate” and that involuntarily reassigning the LPNs to locations where nurses have been striking since Monday is a violation of the collective bargaining agreement with the union.
An attorney for 1199SEIU, which represents 300 LPN’s at Montefiore’s offsite clinics, demanded in the letter that the medical center stop making involuntary reassignments and rescind any current involuntary reassignments, which the union said began Tuesday.
LPNs provide more basic patient care and require less education to earn a license than registered nurses.
“LPNs should not be told to work outside their scope of practice or in hospital and emergency settings they are unaccustomed to, potentially jeopardizing patient care or their professional licenses,” 1199SEIU said in a statement to CNN Wednesday.
Montefiore declined to comment on the allegations brought by the union.