Striking staff not allowed to return to work at Mayo Clinic’s Albert Lea hospital

A day after about 80 employees at Mayo Clinic Health System in Albert Lea, Minnesota, staged a one-day strike, the hospital wouldn’t let them return to work, following through on Mayo’s threats to do so because of one-week contracts with replacement workers.

The striking employees are members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Health Care Minnesota. The union represents certified nursing assistants, housekeepers, skilled maintenance employees, sterile processing and utilities/materials management workers.

According to the Albert Lea Tribune, workers were prevented from entering the building at 6 a.m. on Dec. 20.

“I think it’s a sad day, especially for Mayo, because it does not show that they are—they’re always saying, ‘We’re here for the patient and the people’—well, it shows that they’re not here for the people,” said materials management employee Charlotte Nelson-Shocker.

Mayo had stated any employees participating in the one-day strike on Dec. 19 wouldn’t be allowed to return to work for a week because of commitments needed to hire replacement workers. The health system also disputed using the term “lock out.”

“They made the decision to stop work,” said Mayo Clinic spokesperson Ginger Plumbo. “This is not a lock out.”

Read more on the reasons behind the one-day strike at the link below: