University of Illinois nurses, SEIU Local 73 strike moves downtown

CHICAGO —Hundreds of striking University of Illinois nurses and health care workers marched to the Thompson Center Friday morning to ask Gov. JB Pritzker for support.

In addition to at least 800 nurses, about 4,000 SEIU union members are also on strike. The hospital employees are fighting for a 4.5% increase in pay over the next four years, more PPE and a smaller patient load.

The nurses contract expired nearly a week ago.

This is the University of Illinois at Chicago’s first nurses strike. Talks have been underway since May.

The hospital has said through statements that they respect their employees right to strike, but don’t believe this work stoppage is in the best interest of the campus community.

Talks have continued while nurses are on strike. The SEIU Local 73 members make-up lab and medical techs, clerical and maintenance workers at the hospitals.

Members of Rainbow PUSH also joined the fight Friday.

While the strike continues, the hospital won a court case that keeps at least 500 critical care nurses on the job.

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