We have a lot to report tonight!

Mid-Bargaining Town Hall

April 23 is the last day for either of the bargaining teams to present new proposals, so our union will be hosting a second town hall after everything is on the table.

Join us on Wednesday, April 24, from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. in UHS 8B60 to learn more about OHSU’s proposals and let us know your thoughts. The town hall will be live-streamed for members who are unable to attend in person. Light refreshments will be  served. A link to the live-stream will be emailed prior to the event. You may email questions in advance to in advance.

This is your opportunity to give our union direction as we develop our counterproposals over the coming weeks — we hope you join us! A flyer for the event has been emailed to our members — feel free to print and share the flyer.

OHSU’s PTO Proposal

First, we feel it’s important to inform our members that our bargaining team was disappointed that OHSU chose to send their “not your mother’s PTO program” email in the midst of negotiations. During conversations earlier in bargaining, our teams established an understanding that we would give each other advance notice of this type of communication. We feel that OHSU’s email showed a lack of respect toward the bargaining process and our team.

Although OHSU’s communications claim that its PTO proposal package isn’t a take-back, our union disagrees with this characterization. OHSU’s proposal is a warmed-over, slightly tweaked (for the worse) version of its 2017 proposal that our members strongly opposed. Among other things, OHSU’s package proposal:

  • Creates new barriers to utilizing accruals for sick leave
  • Reduces vacation cash-out upon termination
  • Reduces annual vacation cash-out opportunities
  • Creates two tiers of benefits (e.g., paid parental leave or no paid leave) depending on an employee’s retirement plan*

Our union will be talking about OHSU’s PTO proposal in much more depth over the coming weeks. In the meantime, we’ve emailed a copy of OHSU’s comparison/summary chart to our members. Please comment here and let us know your thoughts and questions about this proposal. OHSU absolutely reads these comments, so this is your chance to share your feedback with OHSU leadership.

OHSU’s Proposed Insurance Take-backs

Despite OHSU’s unprecedented financial success, today its bargaining team also proposed the health-care insurance take-backs that our union has been expecting. Key changes include:

  • Decreasing OHSU’s contribution to employee-only insurance coverage from 100 percent to 95 percent (for full-time employees)
  • Decreasing OHSU’s contribution to all other tiers of insurance coverage from 88 percent to 83 percent (for full-time employees)
  • Imposing a $100/month spousal surcharge on employees whose spouse is covered by OHSU’s insurance when the spouse could be covered by their employer’s insurance (a flat fee — whether the employee is full time or part time, whether or not the employee earns only $15/hour)
  • Overhauling the Employee Benefits Council, turning it from a collaborative body that makes decisions about our benefits to one that merely makes recommendations (final decisions about your benefits would be made by OHSU’s vice president of Human Resources)

OHSU’s earnings are $62 million above budget, yet it wants to nickel-and-dime its employees. OHSU is a health-care institution, yet it has proposed making its health-care insurance more of a financial hardship for its own employees. OHSU’s financial performance improves year after year after year, yet it feels it bears an unsustainable, “disproportionate share” of its employees’ health-care costs.

Community Advisory Board

On a more positive note, today our union presented a proposal that we’re very proud of: a memorandum of understanding to develop a community advisory board. We already know that OHSU has a huge impact on the health care of those in our community and throughout Oregon. Local 328 believes that OHSU has the power to do even more for the common good.

Our proposed advisory board would gather together various constituencies at OHSU: all four labor unions, the Faculty Senate, the PA Board, the Advanced Practice Nurse Council, the OHSU All-Hill Student Council, the OHSU House Officers Associations and OHSU management. These parties would meet to look at issues such as health-care costs, clinic access, housing and transportation issues, educational and employment opportunities, sustainability and government and policy matters. Non-OHSU stakeholders (community groups, representatives from local government, etc.) would be invited in on an ad-hoc basis. The advisory board would periodically submit a report of recommendations to the OHSU president and the leaders of the various participant groups.

Local 328 currently has commitments from a significant majority of the above groups and are in the process of working with the others, and we have buy-in from community groups such as Portland Jobs with Justice. We intend to work together regardless of how the proposal plays out. We hope that OHSU will join us.

Other Notes from Today’s Session

In addition to our community advisory board proposal, this week Local 328 also presented the following proposals:

  • 10.9 Transport Work — A $10 increase (from $65 to $75) to the bonus PANDA employees receive for each transport assignment.
  • New: Staffing Task Force — A memorandum of understanding to convene a task force to discuss concerns regarding significant staffing issues at OHSU.
  • Appendix A: Contract Variations Applicable to Salaried Employees — We proposed a number of changes to this appendix, including:
    • Removing a number of the contract exceptions so that salaried employees have more parity with hourly employees
    • Increasing vacation time:
      • 1st – 5th year: increase from 15 days to 18
      • 5th – 10th year: increase from 17 days to 19
      • 10th15th year: increase from 19 days to 20
      • 15th20th year: increase from 21 days to 22
      • After 20th year: increase from 24 days to 25
    • Adding shift differentials that match those of hourly employees
    • Adding options to earn overtime
    • Adding a process for salaried employees to change to hourly status

Over the past several weeks, a number of proposals have been presented by both teams and are still in play, including:

  • Making changes to the steward program
  • Limiting unauthorized absences to no-call/no-shows only
  • Offering free transit passes
  • Introducing not-for-cause drug testing
  • Changing the grievance process

After presenting our final new proposals next week, our union’s bargaining team will focus on negotiating the above proposals, the various economic proposals, and more. As we move into the second half of negotiations, now is the time for our members to get active, make your voices heard and think about what the various proposals mean for you. Again, we encourage you to comment here and on our Facebook page, as well as join us at the town hall on Wednesday, April 24.


*Note: OHSU’s proposed language makes changes to the voluntary cash-out for PERS Tier 1 & 2 employees, but not to their cash-out upon termination. (An earlier version of this post was unclear in this regard.)


  1. Not acceptable OHSU! You are a healthcare institution with plenty of money and you are trying to take more and more away from the employee. How about instead you show your employees they matter and give us what we deserve!

    1. I totally with you. Their PTO proposal just make everyone lost 8 hours vacation due to sickness. With the increasing in revenues, they decided to take more away from their nuts and bolts who make this happened. I am not only disappointed and feeling being disrespected. Greed is on full display on OHSU’s proposal.

    2. We agree! Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00-2:00 pm in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  2. I’ll leave emotions out and say I vehemently disagree with the PTO/insurance proposals. I do better under sick/vacation. Never had problems with it. (Full disclosure, I’ve always had excellent managers. I know not everyone has.)

    As a salaried employee, I never considered going hourly again. I want a predictable way to reach top of scale reasonably. Otherwise the “longevity bonus” is a lie. 17 years is not reasonable, especially for hard-working employees. (They can drop the line about raises being capped at 3.5% aggregate and let managers give appropriate raises.)

    I want the real PTO reason. I want OHSU to put it in writing. It’s not to make time off easier to manage. I have no problems.

    1. I agree with you, the proposed PTO plan is not helpful for most people. I get that that want to add parental leave time, but they are taking too much away from everyone, especially those that will never see a benefit from the parental leave program.

      I, too, would not be interested in switching from salaried to hourly, but OHSU’s “policy” of no non-contract raises stinks. When I was hired I took a less than I wanted because they said they would review my performance after a year and give an appropriate raise. When the time came it was all, you get an automatic “merit” raise, and “there are budget problems and all funds are frozen, we can’t even buy a pencil.”

    2. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. The reason they want you to switch is to get a large amount of vacation off of the books. OHSU is required to reserve the cash and this will free it up. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00-2:00 pm in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  3. The PTO offer is bull. We will have less access to days off. I understand PTO will give us more control with how we use our hours, but lets be honest. 8 hours of EIB is bull, you have to use 4o hours of PTO first before you can even access it. And it accrues so slowly.

    Also, 50$ per pay period extra? For my family’s insurance? Whats going on with this supposed surplus OHSU has? The hospital makes more money but I have to pay even more for my already last luster insurance? Bye felicia

    1. :)
      We agree, they also want you to pay more for your insurance, eat any costs if healthcare increases are above 5% AND take away your voice at the EBC! We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00-2:00 pm in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  4. I was also disappointed to see the OHSU email come out in the middle of today’s bargaining session. I continued to monitor updates on AFSCME Local 328’s Twitter, and I always watch Matt’s update video’s on Tuesday night. Thank you again to the bargaining team for keeping our best interests in mind. We continue to support you through honest discussion with our units and displays of green.

    1. Thanks Kerri – you are fantastic. Your engagement is what keeps the bargaining teams spirits up! Don’t forget that there will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00-2:00 pm in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  5. I have been an employee at OHSU for many years now and I have seen a steady decline in benefits year after year. OHSU as a whole has so much to offer its employees and its patients but there are many obstacles that make it less appealing to many. OHSUs location paired with the cost of living in the greater Portland area is making it harder for people to find affordable housing. The result- employees are having to move further out and enduring long, painful commutes to and from work. Longer commutes means longer days and more time spent away from our homes and our families. I am fortunate enough to have access to parking on Marquam Hill but so many do not have the option. Another disadvantage to working at OHSU.

    If we continue to see a decline in our benefits I fear that we will start to see a decline in our employee satisfaction-ratings , employee retention will be affected and recruitment for open positions will become more difficult.

    I personally would like OHSU to raise the bar. Strive to be above average in what you offer your employees.
    Your employees (and your patients) will be grateful

    1. Agreed. Raise the bar OHSU. Do not stoop to some penny pinching “market equivalent.” Our organization is not market equivalent: We teach students and residents, we are on the leading edge of research and innovation, our patient population are the most critically ill and physically challenging, the logistics of commuting/parking/paying you a fortune are unique. OHSU is unique, they should not be taking away from us just to meet the market. OHSU, be a Leader, be THE Leader.

      1. Yes! Yes! Yes!
        Everything that you said! I couldn’t agree more!
        Be THE leader OHSU!
        Set the bar high! Be the institution that everyone strives to be a part of!

    2. We agree – Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th at 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  6. So disappointing. This is NOT OK! Take care of your people and their families! Just like we take care of patients everyday! Set an example step up and keep taking care of your employees. When did it become so much about the bottom line and less about the people that keep this place running?!? Charging people extra to insure their families so they can get care at OHSU if they want?

    OHSU is not going to be able to keep the talent when it doesn’t take care of its own.

    Also no thank you to the “new” PTO. Not being able to cash out my EARNED vacation time >40 hours is a dealbreaker. That was earned. Good luck attracting new talent. More people will be looking to other healthcare systems that offer better benefits.

    1. We agree! Their proposals are disrespectful to the employees and their families. Our members are why they are making record profits. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

    2. Satisfied employees leads to more engaged employees which leads to better patient care!
      That should be out ultimate goal….correct?

  7. I also think this is ridiculous. The employees are the people that keep this place running and making their big bucks and bonuses. If they are not willing to take care of their own why should we help them line their pockets. Employees here are expected to do the work of not one person but three. We work short staffed most of the year and still are able to keep up with the demand of the departments we work for. We should not have to also work at getting what we deserve from our employers. Full coverage of benefits. We work for a medical facility we shouldn’t have to pay out of pocket for health coverage or treatment.
    As far as the PTO goes. I have over a months worth of sick leave saved up and I can only transfer 32 hours over. NO thanks.

    1. Hi Kim-
      Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment and staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  8. I dislike the email that was supposed to wue or convince employees that this PTO structure is new-age and for the employees benefits. Don’t be fooled!!

    The way I interpret it SICK time for appointments will not be covered by Sick time unless 40hr of PTO towards Sick reasons has been used first. So, I have to use myvacation, PTO time for appointments and not my sick time. That really doesn’t make sense!! Who’s going to be tracking all of this if my 40 hours of PTO has or hasn’t been used with in the year yet? This makes my Sick time hand cuffed for usage unless I have alot of Sick needs-more then 40hr in the year. I and many other employees need sick time for appointments that fall on business hours, like 2hr to leave early or come late to go to the dentist. Yet now my family vacation time will be less because I needed to go to the dentist and my Sick time will accrue untouched because I have to 1st use 40hr or 5 days of my PTO, vacation time, for doctors and dental appointments before the Sick time can be used. Thanks wellness and health centered OHSU. My rest time, vacations, and my medical and dental care will both take a hit with this!!

    1. While I don’t like the PTO program at all, they did propose to move 4 days of sick accruals to vacation, so you only actually lose 1 day of vacation time in getting access to your EIB.

      1. Thanks for pointing that out Mike. It also makes clear that for those of us who use more than 40 hours of sick time, we lose 1 day of vacation time. Great proposal OHSU!

        1. Don’t forget you also can only cash out 40 hours of PTO when you leave OHSU and the proposal is not applicable to folks in PERS tiers 1 or 2
          Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

      2. “you only actually lose 1 day of vacation” – the problem is that we have to lose any at all. The reality is that some people hardly use any sick time in general and try to coordinate appointments outside of work hours to minimize impact on their team. Also this means that in reality unless they use *at least* 40 hours of PTO first (or start calling out and scheduling appointments during their shifts) then they’re really losing access to all of that EIB time each year as well.

        1. Exactly! Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

      3. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We appreciate you staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

    2. We aren’t fans either. Thank you for staying informed and commenting. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  9. I’ve seen other big institutions make profit more valuable then their talent and employees. I was always so proud to work for OHSU because I felt like they cared about their employees. Today I realized OHSU only cares about their bonuses and putting more money into their bank. You want to charge families extra to have health insurance? Which already is not very good to start with! Do you realize how expensive it is to get care at this hospital? I make a decent living and for a simple biopsy I had to pay over 1000 dollars out of pocket. For most of your employees that’s a months rent! We pay way more for housing because OHSU makes us PAY for parking. We have to pay 13 dollars a day just to work for OHSU! Sure I can take a bus and spend an hour and a half for my commute one way. Or I can pay twice as much to live closer just to be able to work here? I hear all these commercials about how OHSU cares about families but do you? Do you really care about your employees families because you are definitely doing a terrible job of showing it.

    The PTO email was a shameless sneak attack. I hope you realize that after years of taking benefits away from your employees, we do not trust you. I’m so greatful for our union representatives for being on top of it. I am absolutely against the PTO model and am not falling for your agenda.

    I hope OHSU realizes that all of your recognition that you are getting is because of US. We work hard every day to be the best, our doctors work hard to be the best. Our supportive staff does over time, fills in, works twice as hard (when they don’t have to) so you can keep your doors open. We take away time from our families to give the best care to our patients every day. It’s time that you show us that you support and care for us so we can keep working hard. Otherwise, you will loose a lot of talented and hardworking employees.

    I just want to say thank you to all of our union representative for all of your hard work. It does not go unnoticed.

    1. You are absolutely right Shameful, it is shameful! The logistics of working here are beyond what is normal and the care, though excellent, is extremely expensive already.

    2. Shameful – you are our hero! Thank you for staying informed and articulating your perspective so well. Please talk to your coworkers and make sure that they are paying attention.

      There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

    3. Yes! I agree with this 100%
      The logistics of OHSU make it an incredibly hard place to work but there are those of us that take great pride in our work here.
      It is time for OHSU to take pride in their employees and show that they care! Step up OHSU!

  10. OHSU should be ashamed of their self! For sneaking that email out before Bernie even was finished today. I have been working here since November 1998 and I am in tier 2 so your proposal for PTO and all of that affects me into different ways which is not right he should’ve done it from the time that you started the IAP and beyond. And your takeaways to medical It is very expensive to get medical care here and I choose to come here because I know I’m getting good healthcare but it’s ridiculous that you want to do takeaways and you don’t even talk about the willaminate dental care which I have ,only the Delta dental care.

    1. At this point none of the PTO proposal will affect you. However the cost shift will. You will pay 5% and OHSU covers 95%, the removal of our voice at the EBC will, and if the cost of the plan goes up more than 5% you will pay that too!

      There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  11. First off, thank you to the union stewards for constantly putting your best foot forward. I fear that I would have punched the OHSU team in the face already.

    If OHSU thinks it’s employees aren’t paying attention and aren’t ready to strike they have another thing coming. I personally have worked for OHSU since 2000. Every contract negotiation they take away from the very people that run this company. There shouldn’t even be bonuses for the executives. Why are you continuing to increase their benefits while decrease the benefits of your working class. We are ready to stand up. I cannot wait for the day we all strike. How are you going to run a hospital without the very people that actually run it? We will be laughing.

    We want pay increases that reflect OHSU’s growth.
    We want good health benefits that reflect the very business we provide.
    We want cost of living increases that reflect the rate of growth in the city we work and live.
    We want a parking solution that don’t include increasing the price of parking annually.
    We want to end executive bonuses.

    Without us, you will have no hospital to run.
    Without us, you will no longer be the best.
    Without us, you will have no bonuses.
    Without us, OHSU will fail.

    We are your employees, we are humans, we deserve everything the union is fighting for and more.

    Think of the saying, “Happy wife happy life”. OHSU your wives are VERY ANGRY.

    1. Hell yes JV! I love how they are trying to butter up this inverse relationship: Profits increasing=Employee benefits decreasing. The house husbands are also upset.

    2. JV – we love your comments and appreciate you! Thank you for paying attention. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

    3. All of these things!!

      We want pay increases that reflect OHSU’s growth.
      We want good health benefits that reflect the very business we provide.
      We want cost of living increases that reflect the rate of growth in the city we work and live.
      We want a parking solution that don’t include increasing the price of parking annually.
      We want to end executive bonuses.

  12. We want vacation time to enjoy our families.
    We want sick time to recover when ill so that we can keep our patients safe.
    We want retirement benefits that will allow us to worry less and give more to our patients.

    We want you to listen to us.

  13. The PTO email sells roses and dreams. However it isn’t in the best interest of the employee. It is huge for OHSU spread sheet though. Time earned up to current bargaining was a benefit that gave ownership of vacation time to the employee. I my self have a large bank. in which I do donate some of that at times. If we go to PTO I will no longer own those hours and the company will then get half of it in certain situations. The parental leave part could be added to the current system.

    OHSU isn’t a one person machine. It takes support to keep the machine running. Many people I have talked to express how more and more duties that are not really the scope of their job is being asked of them. I have heard of positions being created for certain people with selective training for individuals ear marked for that position.

    The world isn’t fair and I accept that. However, some love for those that do the work behind the scenes and work hard to keep things running would be nice. Billions being made, and record years of profit. It is a team effort. That being said, it is hard to take on more and more and get nothing in return.

    1. Thank you Concern- We agree and appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment and staying informed. There will be a town hall with lots of information Wednesday the 24th 1:00 in 8b60 in the main hospital. A link will be sent out day of as well.

  14. I am very disappointed, first in the communication regarding “not your mother’s PTO program”. This should have been sent later. As for the program itself, I read through the proposal and do not feel this is fair for us. Your time, whether it is sick leave, or vacation leave, should be yours to use when you need it. Holding sick leave in a bank to require use of a determined (40 hours) before you can access the illness bank is wrong. We work in the healthcare industry. As such, we should have fair and affordable leave and healthcare coverage.

    Which brings us to the changes in healthcare. Cutting contributions and charging us a surcharge for our spouse is not right. Healthcare benefits should not be on the table. Leave the benefits as they are now with no changes.

    As for parental leave, this is great. However, it is not okay to take benefits away to add this program. If OHSU wants to add this program, then they should add it.

    OHSU if on very firm financial footing. The reason they are is all of the hard work every single employee provides, every day, 365 days a year. We are not asking for the moon. We asking for fair and living wages, healthcare to cover our families (which working in a health-care institution should be a done deal), collaboration and support.

  15. I have an idea for OHSU’s management team to save even more $$$.

    Dr. Saruman lives atop a very tall tower, called Isengard, and he can conjure up an army of Orcs who will do all of your bidding for very low wages and no healthcare, and you can use them to replace all of your service staff. You can then use the extra money to build 5 or 10 new buildings every year, instead of only just 2, and also you will receive excellent bonuses every year. The only drawback is selling your soul and your integrity to Sauron, and if you find the one ring you must turn it over to him. But what of that? What is a soul, or integrity? Can you touch it, or measure it? It is probably not worth the hassle and is better turned over to those who can find better uses for it.

    Give it a thought. I haven’t.

  16. Not really into this EIB part of the PTO proposal. If you can’t use it till after you’ve depleted your PTO it doesn’t seem that useful.

    1. Hi TJ. Under OHSU’s PTO proposal you wouldn’t need to deplete your PTO completely before you can access your EIB hours. You would need to burn through 40 hours of PTO each calendar year before you can, though.

      1. 40 hours = 5 days. 16 days PTO – 5 Days sick = 11 days left

        Currently we get 12 days.
        So why is OHSU take an entire day from us?

        Vote NO to PTO

  17. It’s extremely disheartening to see the proposals OHSU is making. As a healthcare institution, OHSU should strive to provide better healthcare benefits than most companies. Instead, they now want us to come out of pocket for coverage that is mediocre at best. Very disappointing!

    As for PTO and the ‘hedge their bets’ email we received from OHSU mid-bargaining session, come on! I’m not against the concept of PTO, but MAKE IT FAIR! It certainly shouldn’t require use of more PTO hours to access the EIB than allowed to one-time transfer sick hours to PTO upon implementation.

    For me, the commute to work and not having parking/paying for parking was an acceptable tradeoff when other things outweighed those negatives. But the scales have definitely tipped, and not in the right direction. I’ve been with OHSU for 16 years now and frankly, I’m tired of the steady decline in the benefits!

    1. Kelly!
      I couldn’t agree more! I have been with OHSU since 2000 and the benefits used to outweigh all of the negative things that we sometimes have to work around like parking, location and commuting. But unfortunately that is no longer the case and OHSU needs to take notice!

  18. I could echo everyone’s comments here.

    I’m relatively new to OHSU, coming close to my 2nd anniversary. I remember being excited about some of the benefits OHSU offered when I went through NEO. I always new AFSCME had played a strong part in us having those benefits and that point is being driven home hard right now.

    The proposals around decreasing OHSU’s coverage of our insurance, paired with decreasing the voice we have through the EBC are awful.

    I’ll especially echo Angela in a comment above: “I personally would like OHSU to raise the bar. Strive to be above average in what you offer your employees. Your employees (and your patients) will be grateful.”

    That’s why I’ve been excited to be here, that’s why I want to continue to be here, that’s why I recommend other people I know look into jobs at OHSU.

  19. OHSU is not on our side by any means!

    All I see are take backs…
    1. Increase in costs to benefits which eat up any increase that AFSCME has proposed and then some.

    2. PTO is not a good way to go!
    We currently can cash out twice a year, under PTO that would go down to once a year
    We currently can cash out if/when we leave 250 hours at our straight rate of pay…under PTO that in essence drops to 40 hours at straight rate of pay by the third year of the PTO plan being in effect
    I personally have no need for PPL
    I don’t see any benefit to the EIB when I have sick time I can access now immediately

    I understand that PTO may benefit some (those who want the Paid Parental Leave benefit for example) but why take away from ALL to only benefit a few.

    I know it’s early on in the process, but I’m already making preparations in case I need to take next steps should OHSU not be more “employee friendly”

  20. Another thing not mentioned above about the proposed PTO change, which I am 1000% against, is that it REDUCES vacation accruals for long-term salaried employees. (The 15-19 and 20+ tiers are proposed to be removed.)

    That is just plain wrong. (Well the whole plan is just plain wrong, but this portion is way over the top.)

  21. I was very disappointed to see OHSU’s proposals for PTO and insurance premiums yesterday. Our SIK/VAC system ain’t broke, and moving to PTO is an unnecessary fix which saves no one any money or stress. In fact, OHSU says “PTO is not a cost-saving proposal. In fact, most of the elements would increase costs to OHSU.” When this is paired with the proposal to increase insurance premiums, it’s a lose-lose.

    Increasing insurance premiums while saying that they’re still leading the market is a disingenuous Overton window, and I’m not falling for it. Keep the current SIK/VAC structure, and keep the current cost-share structure. Neither proposal convinces me that they don’t cancel each other out, to the detriment of staff.

    1. It is absolutely absurd to think that OHSU would propose something that does not benefit them financially. Of COURSE the PTO system would cost them less than our current sick/vacation policy. Do they think we’re idiots?

  22. Al of the proposals OHSU presented today were insulting and appalling. It’s incredibly upsetting that one of the leading healthcare institutions would start to turn it’s back on the health of it’s employees and their families. I say “start to” because this is only the beginning. If they take 5% now, they’ll take more next time. Our membership can not afford this take back. And asking people to pay $100 per month that goes directly into OHSU’s pocket is absurd! OHSU should be proud of the fact that people want to get their healthcare from them! It’s OHSU’s MISSION to “improve the health and wellbeing of Oregonians, OHSU exists to serve others.” But apparently that service comes at a price if you happen to be married to one of the 7,000 AFSCME members whose spouse is employees by OHSU, without which, OHSU would not exist. OHSU works because we do and we shouldn’t be pushished for that. Nor should our loved ones.

    And as far as PTO goes, how insulting that OHSU would come at us with the same, only worse, package that we have been loudly opposed to since 2017! They think that because they attach a cute little “paid parental leave” package to it, that people will give a damn. By the way, that 3 weeks paid leave is not an extension of what you get. It’s included in your maternity/paternity leave and must be taken at the time of leave. So thanks, but no thanks. Twitter gives their employees 5 weeks paid parental leave and they can take it any way they choose. Not to mention, this doesn’t benifit anyone who chooses not to or for whatever reason, cannot become a parent. What an insensitive insult to those people, who would get nothing but less vacation time, less sick time and less money when they leave OHSU if this proposal was accepted.

    1. You said it Kasey! Imagine being a minimum wage employee making 15 bucks an hour, and this place is full of these hard working, underpaid employees who make this place run. Then imagine adding $100 dollars per month to cover your spouse. That is a huge expense. OHSU plays it like they have the option to use their employer’s insurance, but what if that insurance is terrible and expensive and the spouse is making 15 an hour, too? With the cost of living in Portland 100 dollars a month can mean the difference between making ends meet, skipping meals, enduring hardship, etc… I don’t know how long it’s been since the administration has had there last hundred taken away from them, but let me remind them at minimum wage many of these people are living paycheck to paycheck.

    2. All of these proposals are unacceptable and insulting!
      Come on OHSU! You can do so much better!

      You expect the best from us and we give it……

      Our profits prove it!

      Now it is time for you to step up

  23. I was quite taken aback to see that OHSU had emailed out mid-negotiations, especially with a clearly slanted and manipulative title/content. Myself and those that I talked to were not fooled – I am well aware of the tactics they are using but I am disheartened that they went against the good-faith agreement that was in place.

    Regarding PTO and health insurance proposals. I’ll keep it relatively short and simple. OHSU has ample funds to respect, honor, and provide for their employees in the form of supportive, affordable health care and a time off system that works for everyone while being supportive of taking care of ourselves (read: encouraging employees to actually utilize sick time when they are sick to avoid spreading illness to our colleagues and patients, which to me is NOT a PTO system). I implore OHSU to put its money where its mouth is and show it truly cares about its employees and patients by honoring employee needs rather than using employees as a cash-saving mechanism.

    1. Exactly the PTO system actually encourages people to come in when they are sick. Which is the opposite of what they should be encouraging.

      1. Mike, the proposed PTO will absolutely incentivize employees to work during illness, passing their germs to patients and coworkers. A problem that is so real and so obvious for a healthcare facility that I expect OHSU to address this issue and I would love to see how they try to defend it.

  24. OHSU keeps saying our benefits are comparable to other health care systems, but I have friends working at Providence and Kaiser, and they already have much better benefits.

    OHSU wants to restrict our access to the sick time we have already earned, charge us more for parking (when Providence, Legacy and Kaiser employees all get free parking), increase insurance costs by 5% and add a $100 spousal surcharge to top it all off. They are expecting employees to pay more when almost half of us are spending 40% or more of our take-home pay to keep a roof over our heads.

    The current average rent inflation will devour any meager COL OHSU might offer and then some. So once they are done charging us even more for a health care plan they insist we keep because OHSU has a monetary stake in it, employees will wind up bringing home less money than the year before, despite the minimal rise in hourly wage.

    But that’s just business as usual for OHSU, isn’t it? Use the employees as a revenue stream. Offer them a crummy 2% COL and then raise fees and insurance costs so that the COL immediately returns to OHSU’s pocket, plus a little more for good measure.

    Unless they want to offer a COL increase that covers all these extra insurance costs, plus the raise in parking fees, cafeteria costs (which go up every year like clock work after our COL increase), the inevitably yearly rent/tax increases, as well as the standard inflation number given by the government (which doesn’t include housing, food or fuel costs) then I say no. I’m tired of OHSU giving me a .50 cent raise and then taking back $1.00.

    OHSU says that the PTO proposal was offered in “good faith” and not as a cost cutting measure. I call bull crap! How much money will they save by forcing people to use their vacation time for sick time and then preventing employees from accessing their actual sick time unless OHSU gives them permission to use it? OHSU will look good on paper for offering the sick time, but never actually have to pay it out except in cases of catastrophic illness. Shame on you OHSU!

    “Our vision is to partner to make Oregon a national leader in health and science innovation for the purpose of improving the health and well-being of Oregonians and beyond.”

    Please explain to us how restricting access to sick time and cutting healthcare benefits so that employees are forced to choose between paying the rent or paying for health care promotes our well being?

    1. Exactly Christine! Maybe they could redirect some of our parking fees into healthcare plans that could compete with local options like Kaiser or Providence.

  25. Tons of great points already mentioned regarding how the PTO proposal would actually be a decrease in time-off for many people.

    The other really disappointing thing for me about OHSU’s offer is making employees use 40 hours of vacation/PTO time before EIB is going to encourage more employees to come to work when sick. I understand this is a negotiation and both sides start high in what they are asking for. But to propose a policy that would result in more sick employees coming to work at a Healthcare organization is a little hard for me to fathom.

  26. I have worked in the health care industry for many years, at several different types of institutions with different PTO structures. I do not believe that although, it may seem attractive to some to combine sick and vacation accruals, that this is prudent for a health care institution. What this does is absolutely encourages employees to come to work sick, because now they don’t have a separate designated sick bank and do not want to “waste” vacation time when they or their family members are sick. I would think that a health care institution that holds itself in such high regards would want to avoid this type of system at all costs, you will in turn be putting the patient population at higher risk if more employees come to work ill, or put off going to needed doctor appointments because they take a “hit” on their PTO every time they do. It is NOT a good system!
    Additionally, I am also offended that OHSU would consider putting more of a burden on employees for our health care insurance than they already do. Working for OHSU, it is essentially embarrassing that my health care coverage is as poor as it is. Considering that I almost don’t have a choice of going to another institution for my health care services (if I want to pay the lowest price) than where I work, the out of pocket expenses I have incurred in order to keep myself and my family healthy (so I can come to work) are egregious, especially considering my salary! Also, the penalty OHSU wants to impose on employees when they choose to insure their spouse/domestic partner is HIGHLY offensive. Employees who work at a HEALTH CARE Institution should have good enough (or dare I say better) health insurance than other types of employers. If OHSU really wants to be the “#1 place to work, at the best place on earth” then stop trying to cut operating costs at the expense of your employees! And don’t even get me started on parking….

    1. Right on Sonya! PTO will incentivize workers to come in sick, exposing their patient’s and coworkers during the most contagious time. The healthcare here is not the worst, but by no means is it the fantastic, market leading coverage that OHSU pretends it is. Tell it like it is Sonya, good job!

  27. The PTO email they send out said we would get 16 days of pto and 8 of eib. But to use any eib you must use 40 hours of pto. Well..
    40 hours is 5 days.
    16 days – 5 days used due to illness that employee now only has 11 days to use as vacation.

    I think its unfair to use different terms to “trick” people saying we have days and then saying we have to use hours to get eib. Makes it sound like no one is losing anything when they really are losing an entire day they could use for family time or to distress from their very stressful jobs at OHSU.

    Especially because a lot of the managers wont let staff take an unpaid day off. Which to me only being allowed to take 12 days off in an entire year is just not enough. I have many obligations out side of OHSU, as I know many people do. Employees should be able to take unpaid days off without fear of write up. I live in Oregon with no family so I need time to go visit my mother and grandparents; currently I have only been able to see my family once in two years.

    So unless they make the pto bargin an actual bargin
    VOTE NO!

    if we have to use 5 days of pto to get eib then they need to give a minimum of 17 days of pto so that we at least get to keep our 12 days of non medical time.

    Time people use to be happy so that they come to work happy too!

    1. Excellent post! Thank you for breaking down the PTO scam into actual days so that it is easy to see how time is actually taken away in the new proposal. I wonder why OHSU doesn’t break it down so succinctly, oh wait…

  28. I just want to comment on the proposed PTO change, I agree with what is stated above, which I am 1000% against, is that it REDUCES vacation accruals for long-term salaried employees. (The 15-19 and 20+ tiers are proposed to be removed.) If you are close to 15 years or more you will never get any more vacation. Hourly employees will continue to grow . How is that fair. I started in 1999 so people who started a year earlier will be at 28 days and co workers that started 10 years after me will be getting more. So according to this proposal in Jan 2020 I lose vacation have to use PTO before my sick and if I leave I lose most of what I have accrued. I know there are many others in this same sinking boat. NO PTO We need to all stand together to make this contract work.

  29. AFSCME is shooting for a two year contract during a time when OHSU is flush with cash. DO NOT let them erode benefits during these two lucrative years. OHSU is expanding, they need us during this next two years especially. Stay strong, stay together! Tell them NO to increased health insurance, tell them NO to employee payout cuts, tell them NO to PTO!

  30. PTO Proposal
    It would be great if paid parental leave could be added on. It’s so important for parents to have some time with their child at such an early age. It’s unfortunate to see new mother’s going back to work as early as two weeks post-partum because they couldn’t afford to stay home. And we’re not even talking about the recovery time for the mother. On the other hand this would allow the father/partner to be able to help out without using their vacation time.

    Although I absolutely disagree on PTO cash-out at 50% at termination. That’s ridiculous. Those are hours you’ve earned from all the years/time you’ve been a dedicated employee. How about we cut bonuses in half? Exactly.

    If we could hybrid the two in some ways, I think it would be great.

    OHSU Insurance take-back
    Why would OHSU want to reduce contribution from 100% to 95% when earnings are at a surplus? Are the executives not getting paid enough? Not enough bonuses? I think it’s hypocritical to be a hospital yet do not want to keep healthcare affordable for employees who are the true operations of the organization.

  31. Re: OHSU PTO Proposal and changes to Health Care “responsibilities”:
    I have worked here for almost 20 years. Suffice it to say, no matter how well OHSU does financially, year after year, when it comes to contract negotiations, it is ALWAYS OHSU cutting benefits AWAY from its Employees. All I have seen over these many years are TAKE BACKS, TAKE BACKS, TAKE BACKS. My hope is that AFSCME not take any of these deals on our behalves. The most amusing about this predictable action (the process of nickel-and-diming us), OHSU always attempts to make themselves smell like roses. Really? How very “Politically Correct”; great Integrity, indeed.

  32. “Overhauling the Employee Benefits Council, turning it from a collaborative body that makes decisions about our benefits to one that merely makes recommendations (final decisions about your benefits would be made by OHSU’s vice president of Human Resources)”

    Oh hell no. This is an attempt by OHSU to direct benefits with doing more than givelip service to whatever ‘recommendations’ would be presented by the council. It’s purely a naked power grab. No way.

    I’m glad this is a take the whole thing or leave it because nothing in the proposal is appetizing whatsoever. Leave it.

  33. All of the comments above make great points about the proposed change to PTO time. Losing a vacation day after I use my 40 hours to get to my sick bank is a loss, not a benefit. Frankly, I’d rather take “my mother’s PTO program” because she wouldn’t take away a vacation day when I’m sick, and she’d make me a grilled cheese.

    In regards to our insurance, a single person has a $1675 in-network out-of-pocket max that doesn’t include prescription costs. With OHSU’s new proposal, I can add an additional $400 per year bringing my health care costs up over $2000 in the event of a serious illness, surgery or long-term therapy. That’s a real insult to someone working for a healthcare organization.

    OSHU’s email said “the details may surprise you”. Yeah, they surprise me because they have the audacity to cut our benefits while proudly boasting about their record profits in the same breath. No “hip” email subject line will make us not recognize this duplicity.

  34. OHSU says they want “to offer an overall compensation and benefits package that is competitive with other employers and will attract and retain great employees.” Well, do it then!

    When I started working here 15 years ago, OHSU offered:
    – 100% insurance coverage for employees and their families
    – Acceptable yearly cost of living increases (without pushback)
    – Reasonable sick and vacation leave time
    – Paid and matching contributions to our retirement funds
    – Paid continuing education benefits
    – Affordable food options
    – And more!

    It was an attractive deal back then, and what drew me to work here. Over the past 15 years, these benefits have continued to dwindle, and these current proposals on PTO and Insurance Take-backs are insulting (to say the least). Not only would this new benefit package reduce our competitiveness for attracting new talent, but it would greatly reduce our ability to “retain great employees”.

    Show us that you value us by continuing to increase the value of our benefits package, instead of this steady and detrimental decline.

    1. Absolutely agree. OHSU, let’s see you compete. Let’s see you lead the market. Offer parental leave and senior care, you will be heroes! Use your profits not your people!

  35. I echo everything said previously. Why do we have to suffer takebacks in times of prosperity? Why can’t they just offer paid family leave without PTO? If their own research says 6 months is the preferred length of time to stay home after having a child, where the heck does 3 weeks come from? Why would you keep the cap on accruals the same for PTO when you are funneling more hours over there? Why require you use more hours than you compensate us for to access the EIB?

    It’s so demoralizing to realize it’s all about profits, rather than keeping their employees safe, healthy and productive. When will we get a year of bargaining without OHSU telling us they think we deserve less in times of record profits?

    Makes me want to work a lot less hard that’s for sure.

  36. OHSU’s sick and vacation policy is ALREADY a joke and not comparable to other academic medical centers nationally, and now with this PTO model they are cutting days even more. People should be outraged and insulted. Furthermore, OHSU sending out that email like it’s a done deal is manipulative and ridiculous. I hope everyone see’s what is going on and are prepared to strike. If people allow these proposed changes to happen it’ll only worsen each year, ie higher surcharges, etc, and all workers are going to be coming in sick to avoid depletion of their PTO banks.

  37. I notice OHSU left Comp Time out of their PTO proposal. Comp time is eligible for voluntary cash out and cash out at termination, and I’m curious how they envision this be handled going forward. They also weren’t particularly clear how PERS Tier 1 and Tier 2 employees would be handled. Excluded from all the PTO changes, or just from having the PTO banks?

    Also, I’ve been here a while so accrue a lot of vacation. With taking 2 – 3 vacations a year and cashing out twice a year, I’m still maxing out. Reducing the voluntary cash outs to 1 per year would increase the probability that I would lose part of my compensation due to hitting the max. Not to mention that I don’t want OHSU telling me what pay period I can cash out in.

    And don’t get me started about 80 hours cashed out at 50% of my hourly rate when I retire.

    1. Hi Kat. Under the current contract language, the cash-out upon termination (article 12.7.1) only includes vacation accruals, while the voluntary cash-out (article 12.7.3) includes both vacation and comp time. OHSU’s proposed language doesn’t change that (PTO only for termination cash-out, PTO/comp for voluntary cash-out).

      PERS Tier 1 & 2 employees would be excluded from all of the PTO-related changes (e.g., paid parental leave, subsidized senior care), except the changes to the voluntary cash-out.

  38. After reading the emails, from both parties, I am seriously questioning OHSU’s integrity. I, for one, would like an explanation for why they thought it would be appropriate to send their, “Not your mother’s PTO program” email during negotiations. Especially after agreeing not to do so without advanced notice. This is the first contract bargaining I have been employed at OHSU for. I heard from a lot of other employees, prior to the start of bargaining, that in the past OHSU has always been about “Take-Backs”. I didn’t want to believe them. I had loved everything that OHSU stood for but I feel like my rose colored glasses have been removed.

  39. Will the executives agree to cuts in benefits and bonuses like they are asking their employees to do? After all they are some of the highest paid employees in the state of Oregon.

    OHSU Executive Salaries:

    Danny Jacobs, President: $1.1 million dollars, $500,000 a year in bonuses.

    Lawrence Furnstahl, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer: $723,252.14

    Cynthia Grueber, Senior Vice president and OHSU Healthcare Chief Operating Officer: $630,002.1

    Dr. Jeanette Mladenovic, Executive Vice President and Provost, $601,019.9

    Diana Gernhart, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, OHSU Healthcare, $519,000

    Dr. Mark O’Hollaren, Vice President for Strategic Outreach, $507,771.42.

    Janet Billups, General Counsel and Interim Chief Operating Officer, $500,000.02

    Dr. Daniel Dorsa, Senior Vice President for Research, $449,999.94.


    Average Employee Salaries at (OHSU) range from an average of $39,473 to $124,469 a year according to Payscale, or $66,000.

  40. OHSU you and the city of Portland are getting bigger and bigger, so why should our slice of the pie be getting smaller and smaller?

  41. Thanks very much to all those who are working on creating a good contract for AFSCME employees in the next two years.


    What happens if you have used your PTO such that you don’t have 40 hours available and you get sick? Could EIB hours still be utilized in this situation? A related question: Do you imagine that the requirement to use 40 hrs of PTO before using EIB hrs would mean that AFSCME employees would have to save 40 hrs of PTO for this purpose?

    Has anyone figured out potentially what percentage of AFSCME employees might utilize the parental leave benefit? Is this benefit available per pregnancy for any number of deliveries?

    Proposed PTO cash out upon leaving OHSU (except for layoff):
    Are the proposed amounts 68 hrs (50% of 136 max) in year 1, 48 hrs (50% of 96 max) in year 2 and 40 hrs (50% of 80 max) thereafter?

    1. I thought for unclassified people in that situation that they would have to take the remaining portion of the 40 hours that their PTO bank didn’t cover as unpaid.

  42. I won’t go in about how bad this proposal is, since everyone else already has haha.

    All I will say, is throw this proposal in the trash. It’s garbage. Also, shame on OHSU for sending out the email when both sides agreed not to. Hopefully an unfair labor practice can be filed

  43. The email that was sent out by OHSU is par for the course. Every contract the teams agree to terms regarding email and EVERY contract OHSU breaks the terms. They have zero respect for us. Then EVERY contract they try to pit two sides against one another last contacts it was PERS vs non. Now their game is to try to pit salary vs hourly. I have no doubt if they could call in Pinkertons like in the anti union coal wars of the late 19th and early 20th century they would

  44. This is just a cut and paste from my good friend Ben’s post, but I thought it might be useful for OHSU to see it twice as they plead poverty:

    Will the executives agree to cuts in benefits and bonuses like they are asking their employees to do? After all they are some of the highest paid employees in the state of Oregon.

    OHSU Executive Salaries:

    Danny Jacobs, President: $1.1 million dollars, $500,000 a year in bonuses.

    Lawrence Furnstahl, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer: $723,252.14

    Cynthia Grueber, Senior Vice president and OHSU Healthcare Chief Operating Officer: $630,002.1

    Dr. Jeanette Mladenovic, Executive Vice President and Provost, $601,019.9

    Diana Gernhart, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, OHSU Healthcare, $519,000

    Dr. Mark O’Hollaren, Vice President for Strategic Outreach, $507,771.42.

    Janet Billups, General Counsel and Interim Chief Operating Officer, $500,000.02

    Dr. Daniel Dorsa, Senior Vice President for Research, $449,999.94.


    Average Employee Salaries at (OHSU) range from an average of $39,473 to $124,469 a year according to Payscale, or $66,000.


  45. I’ve been working at OHSU for over 20 years, it’s very sad and frustrating to see OHSU, a well reputable health care institution keeps cutting benefits to it’s employees just so they can add more to their already high revenue and top management bonuses. These are very important issues that affect so many employees and their families.
    – NO to PTO, if changing our vacation and sick time to PTO doesn’t save OHSU any money then why change it??? Keep it the way it is.
    – Part time employees who opt out of insurance DO NOT get a penny in benefit contribution from OHSU. So if you choose to be on your spouse’s insurance and opt out, you get no compensation. This was different, we used to get a small compensation but they took that away. Another area where they save money! Every benefit seems to slowly be taken away. That is cruel to the hard working loyal employees. I worked full time for OHSU for 17 years and after that I had to work part time due to my illness. Again no compensation for part time employees who opt out of insurance coverage, WHY???
    If these benefits keep being taken away from us, we won’t be able to afford to work here.
    – Cutting cost to our benefits is absolutely insulting and unaffordable for employees. OHSU has made OHSU PPO as part of the affordable insurance option for it’s employees however OHSU visits, labs, and procedures costs more than other hospitals. It is crazy that OHSU employees can’t afford to pay all these high cost medical bills.
    I understand it’s more cost effective to offer this option like Kaiser does, however Kaiser’s co pays are way less than OHSU. It costs less to go to Zoom care than to go to OHSU urgent care!

  46. I’m so glad everyone here is in agreement how bad OHSU’s proposal is. They’re not fooling anybody! Thank you bargaining team for standing up for us.

  47. I work as a licensed professional and this is my first job following graduate school. I had stars in my eyes when I first started working at the “#1 hospital in Oregon”. Over the last 4 years, this perception has slowly crumbled as OHSU has whittled away benefits and failed to address critical staffing issues, all while continuing to increase executive and leadership compensation and bonuses. I am sincerely so disappointed in how OHSU has chosen to approach their financial proposals during bargaining this contract. The organization’s most recent emails during Tuesday’s bargaining session were the clearest demonstration to date of how low they have sunk and how manipulative they are willing to be.

    OHSU claims that one of the benefits of the PTO model includes earning the same amount of time off as under the current vacation and sick leave model, but having more control over how you use it. False. EIB hours will be restricted until 40 hours of PTO time have been used. OHSU, can you explain how this possibly provides employees more control over using their EARNED time off?

    OHSU also claims that employees would have access to a new benefit of up to 3 weeks of parental leave. Realistically, how many employees could actually qualify for this benefit? In my work unit specifically, only half (if not less) of our employees will be eligible to utilize this benefit, and even then, how often? Maybe 1, 2, 3 times in a career?

    OHSU, how do you justify cashing out 50% of the value of eligible PTO hours at time of termination? These are hours that we as employees EARN. To me, this is the equivalent of my employer taking back my wages from a paycheck I already cashed. This time is earned and employees deserve to receive the equivalent compensation.

    OHSU claimed in their email that “PTO is not a cost-saving proposal. In fact, most of the elements would increase costs to OHSU.” Oh, come on OHSU. Do you really think we’re buying this BS? If this blog is any indication of our thoughts and feelings, we are collectively NOT in favor of this proposal. Go back to the table and come up with a reasonable proposal that does not just create the illusion of more time and more flexibility, but actually delivers on those promises. OHSU works because WE do. Show us that you value us.

  48. Very sneaky of OHSU for not giving it’s long time loyal employees who have PERS a longevity pay. I guess working here for 20 years doesn’t mean anything.

  49. Another question:
    Would the monthly cost share payment for OHSU health insurance be in addition to the benefit lump sum amount thing we do every year to calculate costs (if any)?

  50. I am not in favor of the PTO plan. As others have mentioned, it restricts your access to your sick leave. If I have 300 hours accrued and I leave employment it is just lost? I have worked here a long time. We switched to PTO at one point, and then switched back.

    1. Also, I went “inactive” on my PERS when OHSU started forcing us to pay our employee share. I still consider myself a Tier 1 PERS member but now I am wondering what will happen to my sick leave when I retire (either way).

  51. It’s simple. OHSU thinks it’s employees are stupid. Or less than. Probably both. Senior and executive leadership care only about the money they can make, not about the health and well-being of the employees, much less the patients they claim to serve (many of whom ARE their employees). Hell no PTO.

  52. About 75% of the people I talked with about OHSU’s insulting proposals regarding PTO and the spousal surcharge are ready to strike if it’s not taken off the table. Just sayin…

    1. I know many critical staff who are ready to strike as well. We share in the scarcity we should share in the abundance. OHSU is doing great right now. We do not accept take backs. If anything OHSU should be rolling out an incentive like the parental leave benefit as part of the profit share. The least they can do is keep the status quo. But take backs? Increased employee costs? Do they think we are going to accept this?
      No we won’t OHSU.

  53. I cannot support the proposed PTO changes. I cannot support the insurance take backs.

    I am greatly in favor of the AFSCME proposals to address critical staffing issues. I also favor the Community Advisory Board. These are terrific proposals that have the possibility of improving the services OHSU provides to the community as well as the working conditions of all employees at OHSU.

  54. Like everyone else here, I am struggling to see how OHSU believes the PTO proposal would be of benefit to the EMPLOYEES. I have worked under a single PTO program, and it has advantages and disadvantages, but this bizarre hybrid is a bookkeeping nightmare and provides no real benefits for folks who use more OR less sick days than average in a given year. It is very disappointing to see OHSU devalue employee contributions in this way.

  55. I know this is 2016/2017 data but if pay raises and bonuses are similar to this time, the bonuses for 2016 alone to executives = $736,755.51. Pay raises for executives totaled more than: $471362.66. Together this equals: 1,208,118.17. Now assuming that every employee (all 16478) had a spouse that worked at a different company that had health insurance or worked enough hours to be eligible for health insurance that would be 16478 X $100 = $1647800.00 in spousal charges that employees would have to pay to have there spouse/significant other on health insurance. Clearly this number is probably much lower because again this requires that every employee has a spouse on OHSU insurance that also has a job with insurance elsewhere which is probably no true. Clearly OHSU can cover this amount. It is pretty much pennies for them when the 2016/2017 fiscal year showed 2.96 billion dollars in revenue (source:

    It would be interesting to see the data from 2017 and 2018 bonus and pay raise data but I can’t find it anywhere.

    OHSU executive compensation

    Joe Robertson, President

    Current salary: $1,110,240.04

    Previous salary: $1,027,752.96

    total 2016 bonus: $294,153.84

    Lawrence Furnstahl, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

    Current salary: $723,252.14

    Previous salary: $688,811.50

    total 2016 bonus: $166,967.91

    Connie Seeley, Chief Adminstrative Officer, Senior Vice President for Public Affairs and Chief of Staff

    Current salary: $350,000.04

    Previous salary: $283,250.24

    total 2016 bonus: $67,526.86

    Elena Andresen, Interim Senior Vice President and Provost

    Current salary: $325,000.00

    Previous salary: $250,000.14

    total 2016 bonus: $46,499.80

    John Hunter, Interim Senior Vice President, Dean of School of Medicine; President, Faculty Practice Plan

    Current salary: $713,799.88

    Previous salary: $540, 995.04

    total 2016 bonus: $20,000

    Cynthia Grueber, Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, OHSU Healthcare

    Current salary: $630,002.10

    Previous salary: $590,121.74

    total 2016 bonus: $138,603.1


    Also in 2015 a report shows that bonuses to executives were: $1,075,938.


    1. Regardless of bonuses, those raises are obscene. 8% for Dr. Robertson. 5% for Furnstahl. Upwards of 30% for others.


  56. How does OHSU expect to retain and promote talent if they do not value their employees?

    How can OHSU pride itself on being the #1 hospital (as is plastered all over their glossy advertising) if they roll back healthcare for their staff and their staff’s families?

    How can OHSU pride itself on “Respect for all” when many of these proposed contract changes will disproportionately harm, vulnerable employees, particularly those that already face language, literacy or economic barriers to advancing?

    How can OHSU say “employee wellness” is a priority when they want to diminish our healthcare benefits?

    And on a personal note, my husband’s company has a healthcare plan, but it is atrocious with an astronomical deductible. Because of this, he is on my insurance plan–a resource I am so happy to be able to contribute to our stability. Why does OHSU want to punish us with $100 surcharge because his employer doesn’t provide him with adequate healthcare benefits? Why do they want to take money away from our savings and put it in the pockets of executives who already receive unbelievable bonuses, especially when they understaff and underpay their teams?

    Front line staff is the backbone of OHSU, not its bottom line. As Matt said at the Steward training: “If we share in the scarcity, we should share in the prosperity.”

  57. One of the benefits they tout says “A PTO model can provide more predictable and consistent staffing for your work unit, which could reduce the times you need to cover for colleagues on short notice.” I don’t understand how a PTO model would change staffing at all. You would still need to request vacation and planned sick time (for medical appointments, etc.) like you do now, and you would still have people calling in sick at the last minute because that’s how being sick works. So how does the new PTO model provide more predictable and consistent staffing? This is not a rhetorical question. I am legitimately wondering if I’m missing something.

    1. When OHSU first attempted to interest AFSCME-represented employees in PTO, it was mentioned by HR at our town hall that our bargaining unit over-utilizes sick time; i.e. calls in sick too much. If one assumes that OHSU of course *wants* its employees to stay home when they’re sick, one could then assume that what was meant by this is that OHSU thinks we’re calling in sick when we’re not really sick. (The solution to that implied problem is for managers to *manage* their employees and discipline any employee who is determined to be misusing sick time.)

      I think OHSU believes that fewer employees will call in “sick” if they know they’ll have to burn through PTO hours that they could potentially use for vacation. If one assumes that our employees are operating in good faith, though, what PTO is more likely to result in is people coming to work sick when they should be staying home. (The solution to more predictable and consistent staffing is for OHSU to hire more employees instead of making do with the bare minimum.)

      Even if you set aside the issue of sick time, how does PTO provide any flexibility for employees when staffing is so low that it’s hard for employees in some departments to get their vacation time approved at all? Calling our accruals PTO instead of VAC certainly won’t help with that problem.

      1. Thanks Jennifer, that makes sense. Their reasoning behind why PTO would create more consistent staffing is disheartening.

      2. Over-utilizes sick time compared to whom? I know several unclassified employees who leave early or work from home when they are sick but don’t put in their sick time since they are still technically working. For those of us without that leeway, we have to use our sick time to cover the absence. I think the assumption that OHSU seems to have that most of us are calling in sick when we aren’t is insulting and offensive. What happened to assuming positive intent? If a manager feels that an employee is taking advantage of the system, there are other ways to handle the issue.

    2. You aren’t missing anything. Their argument doesn’t work. If an employee is presumed to act honorably and call in during genuine illness it changes nothing. If an employee wants to call in sick to go snow boarding, it changes nothing.

    3. I suspect because people are not allowed to use their extended illness bank until they have spent 40 hours of PTO i.e. vacation time. People will not want to spend their vacation time so they will come to work sick. You will be well staffed with sick people making their co-workers and patients sick too.

  58. I’m curious how the spouse surcharge works if spouse DOES have their own health coverage thru their employer, but uses OHSU/MODA as secondary coverage. Still a surcharge? I will gladly opt out of OHSU coverage completely and be on my spouse’s if OHSU comes up with more than a pathetic $50/mo credit, especially when it’s claimed that it costs $1125 a month to supply my family with insurance. Even unclassified employees get $100 for opt out.

  59. Another concern that maybe someone can provide some insight into: I have heard rumors that OHSU is proposing a change to attendance related issues. Currently, our contract states that “Progressive discipline for attendance may be triggered by three (3) occurrences in a 90-day period”. I have personally been called out by my department manager when I used 3 sick days in 3 months. Although I did not receive a written warning or anything, it was still threatening. The change I have heard about OHSU proposing is extending this period to 180 days. Meaning, disciplinary action may be (but does not necessarily have to be) pursued if an employee has 3 or more occurrences in 6 MONTHS. When coupled with the new EIB use restrictions, this is very concerning to me. Both of these proposals together create a significant barrier to employees using sick time. An employee needs to call in sick 5 days (for 8 hour shifts) in order to use up the required 40 hours of PTO for sick leave before being able to access the EIB bank. However, if the employee calls in for more than 2 separate sick days in 6 months, they risk being subject to disciplinary action – unless these sick days are used consecutively and therefore count as only 1 “occurrence”. I am a relatively younger employee currently in good health but there are definitely instances where I have had to call in sick on 3 separate occasions in 6 MONTHS, and this does not seem unreasonable to me. It is time I earned! And I do not want to risk the health of the patient populations I serve. With these new proposals, it seems as if I am going to have to make one of two choices: A) Call in sick for multiple days in a row to use up the required 40 hours of sick leave in order to access EIB hours that year while tallying the least amount of “occurrences” in 180 days or B) Come to work sick because I do not want to risk disciplinary action that may happen with >2 occurrences.

    1. Hi AG. On March 5, OHSU did indeed propose changing Article 23.3.5 so that progressive discipline could be triggered if an employee has 3 occurrences in a 180-day period. Our team has not responded to that proposal.

  60. Jennifer,

    Lol 3 occurrences in 180 days? That’s hilarious. Some departments give people occurrences if they forget to clock in or out sometimes. I’ve yet to be on the bargaining team, but is this really stuff they come up with? We should ask for $1000 dollar bonuses every month that we don’t have any occurrences if that’s the case. If they want to make unreasonable proposals, then we should do the same.

  61. OHSU’s PTO proposal says “EIB hours could be used once 40 hours of PTO have been used for sick leave reasons in the year”. I heard sick leave has to be consecutive 40 hours in a year to be able to access EIB (instead of accumulative sick leave of 40 hours in a year). Is that true? If it is, then basically one cannot access EIB bank without major illness. If I am relatively healthy, have no chance to use my EIB bank, what happens to the EIB accrual when I leave OHSU?

    1. Hi, Jane. OHSU’s proposed language re: EIB states that it can be accessed for sick time, FMLA/OFLA, medical/dental care, and bereavement leave “..after the employee has used 40 hours of PTO (prorated for less than 1.0 FTE) or unpaid time (if no PTO is available) for leave due to these reasons in the same calendar year.” So, employees would not need to take the 40 hours consecutively.

      1. So, a person can have hours in the EIB bank, but if they spent their PTO on vacation then they have to wait a week, without pay, before the EIB can be accessed?

        1. Yes. For example, if you were out sick with the flu for 6 work days, but only had 2 hours of PTO in your bank at the time, you’d use those 2 hours of PTO, then you’d have to take 38 hours unpaid, then you could access 8 hours of EIB to cover the last day of your absence.

  62. I DO NOT AGREE with the new proposed PTO bank and insurance changes. I have been an employee at OHSU for over 20yrs and in that time I have accrued many sick hours as I barely use those hours, from what I understand there is a one time transfer of a minimal amount of hours which is ridiculous! The transition from our current vacation/sick to PTO does not seem fair or balanced.
    Insurance take-back really? OHSU doesn’t seem to want empoyee retention if there is no real incentive to stay employed here with the cuts.

    1. Hi Sally Jo. Under OHSU’s proposal, all of your SIK would transition over to EIB and all of your VAC to PTO. Then, if you have more than 40 hours of EIB, you can transfer up to 32 hours from your EIB to your PTO bank. That transfer is meant to offset the fact that you would need to burn 40 hours of PTO before you can access your EIB accruals.

  63. Come work for OHSU! We offer:
    – a crappy PTO plan that encourages your coworkers to come to work sick
    – health insurance that you pay a premium for, despite the fact that we are self insured
    – a penalty to insure your spouse, if he/she/they could obtain their own really crappy insurance
    – an attendance policy that sets you up for failure
    – a wage that can’t support you and your family
    – the privilege of paying dearly for parking, if you’re lucky enough to get a spot
    – the joy of working for an extremely prosperous organization. Like, 11 billion in discretionary funds. Those funds are not shared with the employees who do the work and take care of the patients.
    OHSU works because we do.
    No to PTO
    No to spousal surcharges
    No all the other takebacks
    Pay us a wage that allows us to live in the same city that we work.
    Provide an environment that encourages us to stay home when we’re sick
    Pay our insurance premiums and provide insurance that doesn’t have deductibles and coinsurance
    Raise the bar, OHSU!

  64. No to PTO
    No to changing our insurance premiums
    No to spousal surcharge

    As a hospital you should be ashamed. The employees do not get the respect they deserve here. Always take never give!

  65. 25 years at OHSU and from my perspective, Leadership does not value staff as they used to do. I do not like the PTO proposal (we tried this back in the 90s and it was miserable) and I especially do not like that we are being told over and over how privileged we are to be working at OHSU. It should go both ways, but lately, it feels like we are always getting the short end of the deal. I enjoy work, my colleagues are excellent and in spite of many challenges (budget, parking, etc) I feel as though OHSU does do a lot of good in the Community. But that good is directly linked to the fine folks who work here. If Leadership does not work to retain their greatest asset, which is the staff, I don’t care how many marble lobbies they build or how great the views are. They will have lost their best and brightest resource, and that will not be replaceable.

  66. Every contract has resulted in us losing something. Vacation, retirement, health insurance, longevity, etc.

    Not this year.

    Not with record profits.

    Not with executives earning over half a million each year with options for bonuses.

    Not with Billions of $’s in cash sitting in the bank.

    We work too hard to be disrespected over and over again.

    Not this year.

    1. Right on Ben! OHSU is no position to cry poor this term. The employees should not be giving up a single nickel this contract. We will stand together.

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