A Message From the President
A message from our Lead Negotiator, and current HOA President, Kyle Johnson.
Fellow House Officers,
In just a few short days your House Officer Association will officially start negotiations with the University of Michigan and Regents for a new 3-year contract. I wanted to provide you with a review, a few requests, and your HOA team's goals for this contract cycle.
Over the past 3 years, we have experienced tumultuous times from both external and internal factors. A pandemic swept through the globe, and we were not spared. While COVID is still present, the fanfare, "hazard pay," and brief community recognition are no more. This has been replaced by full hospitals, short-staffing, and a return to the impatience of modern society. When we made sacrifices to help the efforts, our training was sacrificed. When advanced practice providers called out, we showed up and we continue to show up. When support services, such as hospital transport falls behind, we fill in. Inflation and interest rate increases make it an even greater struggle to make ends meet.
As your HOA team embarks on the negotiation journey, we need the support of everyone. Our position is unique. There is a fundamental power imbalance that the administration and hospital enjoy and is the crux of every residency union nationwide. We cannot freely leave our job for another hospital, employment-related issues can be unjustly punished under the guise of "educational remediation/discipline," and individual programs can threaten delayed graduation which severely limits our future. The administration knows these facts, and the HOA continually must intervene in disputes and grievances related to the hospital’s unjust use of this power dynamic.
Our negotiation team has been preparing for months to address these issues head-on. This includes inflation-adjusted pay increases, pay for additional shift coverage, and protections against inappropriate work assignments, along with increased meal funding, and specific employment-related language.
We need everyone's help. This is a local, grassroots organization without the support of a nationwide presence. Our campaign will mainly be promoted over social media. Retweet, share, and add to the conversation. Be respectful and be present. Over the next two weeks, we will continue our introduction of your bargaining team on Twitter and Instagram.
Updates during negotiations will be provided on a secure WhatsApp list, and when appropriate over Twitter.
Your negotiations team is prepared. I am prepared. We need you to join the team. Together, we will achieve our goals.
Hail to the victors!
Kyle Johnson, MD PGY5