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Union: EMMC Nurses Plan Two-Day Strike Next Week

BANGOR, Maine - A union representing nurses at Eastern Maine Medical Center say their members are going on a two-day strike next week over staffing levels at the Bangor hospital.

The Maine State Nurses Association, National Nurses Organizing Committee and National Nurses United contract with Eastern Maine Medical Center expires Thursday. In a press release, union officials say there has been little movement over the staffing issue since April.  They maintain that current staffing levels at the facility put patient safety at risk.

A hospital spokesman says bargaining teams representing the union and the hospital are resuming negotiations that have stalled in recent meetings. The spokesman says the union opened bargaining Thursday by giving notice that members plan to strike on July 13 and 14.

The hospital has said staffing ratios and compensation are the biggest issues remaining on the table. The two sides extended the contract in mid-June when it was about to expire.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.