/ Modified nov 9, 2018 3:49 p.m.

Election Analysis; Voter Reaction; Nurses Unionize

A journalists roundtable goes over results from closely watched races and asks whether a blue wave swept Arizona.

Following Election Day, this week Arizona 360 presented analysis on the results. Joining Lorraine Rivera for a journalists roundtable: Green Valley News editor Dan Shearer, Arizona Daily Star editorial page editor Sarah Garrecht Gassen and Tucson Local Media executive editor Jim Nintzel. Topics included the close race for U.S. Senate; results in races for governor and the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Congressional Districts; the outcome of some prominent propositions; and whether or not a Democratic blue wave swept the polls in Arizona.

Leading up to Election Day, Arizona 360 heard from voters in the 2nd Congressional District and students at the University of Arizona about the issues that matter to them most. A day after polls closed, Christopher Conover followed up with a voter from each discussion: Democrat Gary Jones and Republican John Dalton. The two shared their thoughts on the results and their hopes for Congress ahead of the 2020 presidential election.

Nurses at two Tucson hospitals, St Mary's and St Joseph's, voted overwhelmingly last month to unionize. Vanessa Barchfield reports on how that decision came about and what that means in a state with historically low union membership.

Fawn Slade is a nurse on the orthopedic floor at St. Joseph’s. She says the efforts to organize started in September when some union representatives met with nurses from both hospitals. Close to 75 percent of the nurses at both St. Joseph’s and St. Mary’s voted to join the National Nurses Organizing Committee/National Nurses United. Slade said the choice was easy, because the union allows nurses to have their voices heard and to bargain together to ensure better care for their patients.

Barchfield also spoke to labor and employment attorney Barney Holtzman, who explained the appeal of unions and how they function in a right-to-work state like Arizona.

"The employer cannot force or enter into an agreement with a union to say, 'We'll only hire union workers.' And similarly, unions can't force all of the employees to pay union dues," Holtzman said.

The nurses at St Mary's and St Joseph's will now elect leadership then enter contract negotiations with hospital administration. In a statement, Tenet-Healthcare said that it respects the decision to unionize and it will work to reach a mutually beneficial collective bargaining agreement.

Arizona 360
Arizona 360 airs Fridays at 8:30 p.m. on PBS 6 and Saturdays at 8 p.m. on PBS 6 PLUS. See more from Arizona 360.
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