Business & Tech

A look back at Boston’s last nurses strike in 1986

The last nurses strike in Boston was in May 1986, at Dorchester’s Carney Hospital.

Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff/File

The last nurses strike in Boston was in May 1986, at Dorchester’s Carney Hospital.

Nurses at Tufts Medical Center will hold a one-day strike Wednesday. The last nurses strike in Boston was in May 1986, when 400 at Dorchester’s Carney Hospital sat out for five weeks.

About that strike:

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It was the first time in Carney’s 123-year history that nurses walked off the job.

At the time, the Carney had a maximum patient load of 416. In late June 1986, two weeks after the strike ended, patient levels were at just 185 — that was up from 120 during the strike.

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Nurses eventually agreed to a three-year contract, with raises of 5.5 percent per year.

Seventy-four nonunion employees were laid off during the strike, a hospital spokeswoman said.

At the time, the Daughters of Charity were the hospital’s operators. Carney was purchased by Steward Health Care System in 2010 as part of its deal to buy the Catholic Caritas Christi Health Care system.

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SOURCE: Globe staff research

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