Minnesota mental health workers begin 3-day strike

More than 130 mental health workers at Allina Health will start a three-day unfair labor practices strike on Monday.

The workers, who are members of the union SEIU Healthcare Minnesota and Iowa, will begin their strike at 10 a.m. on Monday at Abbott Northwestern in Minneapolis and Unity Hospital in Fridley. The picket lines will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Wednesday. 

The mental health workers recently organized their union, saying they're facing "anti-union tactics and deliberate delaying at the negotiation table," a news release states. These workers held a one-day strike in May during Mental Health Awareness month, saying they haven't seen progress at the negotiating table since. 

The union members voted with 98% support to authorize the strike. They're fighting for a fair contract and safe staffing levels.

The Allina Health workers will hold a rally at 10:30 a.m. on Monday at Abbott Northwestern, a news release says. 

Workers at M Health Fairview had also voted to strike but announced last week they wouldn't be going forward with it after progress they'd seen at the bargaining table. 

This health care strike comes weeks after nearly 15,000 nurses, who are members of the Minnesota Nurses Association, went on strike. The nurses returned to work after a three-day strike in September despite no deal being reached with their employers