MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - "Safe staffing saves lives, every patient every time," chanted nurses in the Iron Workers Local 8 meeting room.
Thursday night, around 100 nurses not only practiced several cheers for their potential strike, but made over 100 signs, front and back to use in their picketing.
"I think it’s awesome that we have all this community support, the support of our nurses, our family, and our friends, everyone who has come out to join us and hope we to see on the picket line," said Andria Corcoran, a registered nurse at UP Health System Marquette.
The nurses will use the signs made Thursday for their intended strike if necessary starting next Thursday morning at 7 a.m. until Saturday, October 7th at 6:59 a.m.
"The plan is to meet down at the union member office and proceed up to the hospital," said Kris Hough, a registered nurse. "We will stay in the public’s eye with our hope to educate them so they really know what’s out there."
The hospital has made no new comment Thursday but, they have said in a statement on Wednesday that they are continuing to negotiate in good faith with the nurses as they have more bargaining sessions between now and October 5.
Both the hospital and the MNA hope to come to a contract agreement after five months of negotiations.
"I really hope they come prepared that they know we are serious about this safe patient care and that they are willing to at least talk about it," said Tammy Sustarich, a registered nurse.
The hospital also confirmed they are securing fully qualified temporary nursing staff through HealthSource Global to replace those who go on strike to ensure employees and physicians they have the support they need to care for patients.
If the nurses and Up Health System Marquette do reach a contract agreement in their future meetings, there will be no strike.
TV6, FOX UP and UpperMichigansSource.com will continue to follow this story.