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Backus Hospital, nurses’ union reach tentative contract agreement after hours of negotiation, 2-day strike

New London

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Backus Hospital in Norwich and the union that represents its nurses Saturday have reached a tentative contract agreement, according to a release from the office of Governor Ned Lamont.

The AFT Connecticut labor federation posted a tweet regarding the settlement Saturday, saying an agreement came after 12 hours of negotiations:

The nurses at Backus Hospital hit the picket line twice this past week, complaining about unfair labor practices and demanding a new contract.

Union officials told News 8 Tuesday they have been fighting for a so-called “fair” contract since June.

The strike happened less than two weeks after the Department of Public Health issued a COVID alert for Norwich. The city is now among 10 other CT communities under the Red Alert for COVID.

“This agreement represents the renewed partnership between incredible nurses who have been true heroes during this pandemic on the front lines since day one, and a hospital that has served the region well for months. These nurses fought for a fair deal and that was the end result. I want to thank the leadership of both Hartford Healthcare and AFT for coming to the table and hammering this out over the previous week.”

Governor Ned Lamont

State officials held “active conversations” with both the hospital and the union this past week to try to complete an agreement since the area is experiencing a surge of COVID-19 infections.

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