Attorney Jim Hykel Wins The Right Of 1199SEIU To Seek Card Check Recognition For Nurses At BMC Satellite Health Center

February 26, 2024

On February 26, 2024, a neutral arbitrator ordered that Boston Medical Center recognize 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East based on card check authorization for nurses at BMC's new behavioral health center in Brockton. Pyle Rome attorney Jim Hykel represented the Union in the arbitration proceeding.

The contract between BMC and 1199SEIU contains a side letter requiring BMC to recognize the Union and apply the terms of the Union contract to new facilities where the Union can "demonstrate a majority showing in such new unit or site." When BMC opened its new satellite behavioral health facility, the Union collected cards from a majority of the RNs, but the Hospital refused to allow the card check. Despite the broad and simple contract language, BMC argued that the agreement did not apply to locations outside of Boston and that card check was not allowed, but Attorney Hykel convinced the arbitrator to enforce the contract's clear terms as written.

The arbitrator ordered BMC to allow for card check authorization and, upon proof of majority status, to recognize the Union as the nurses' exclusive representative and to apply the terms of the existing CBA to the RNs in Brockton.

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