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University of Illinois Hospital nurses ratify new contract

Nurses at the University of Illinois Hospital have ratified a new three-year contract after narrowly avoiding a strike last week.

The nurses voted 91 percent to 9 percent to ratify the contract, which improves patient safety protections and maintains safety standards on floating between units; and provides a two-week notice for nurses’ schedules, according to a statement from the Illinois Nurses Association.

The sides had been negotiating for several months with a federal mediator until the nurses scheduled a one-day strike for Oct. 21. The strike was averted when both sides agreed on a new contract on Oct. 20.

“This is a victory for all nurses and patients in Illinois,” Alice Johnson, executive director of the INA, said in the statement.