Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News)- Documents leaked on social media are shedding light on Mayo Clinic’s internal communications regarding unions. 

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The leak comes as a non-profit organization called the Med City Nursing Alliance is pushing to establish a nurses union at Mayo Clinic. 

The group organized a protest march that started at St. Mary’s Hospital and ended at Mayo Clinic’s campus in downtown Rochester earlier this month. The leaked documents contain similar language to Mayo’s public statements regarding unions. 

Social Media Leak: Mayo's Directions for Management Regarding Unions

The Reddit post includes a screenshot of an email sent by Senior Employee and Labor Relations Specialist Chris Dvorak that indicates the documents were referenced in a recent leadership call.  

One of the documents is a list of talking points for Mayo leadership to use in the event staff broaches the topic of unions. The document tells leaders to not proactively mention unions but to be ready for the topic to come up. 

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The document asks leaders to “read the room” and to “share what makes sense in the moment.” Also included is Mayo’s philosophy on unions, which the leaked document states is “we prefer a direct relationship with our staff vs going through a 3-party that doesn’t understand our mission or values.” 

The talking points also say it's “easy for unions to promise. Hard to deliver.” Union-represented Mayo locations follow the same rules, policies and staffing models as non-union locations and pay and benefits for non-union employees either match or exceed those of employees who are in a union, the leaked talking points also say. 

Also included in the leak was a document titled “Union Avoidance.” The document includes four sections that are titled:

  • “Mayo Clinic's Philosophy on Unions” 
  • “Importance of prevention” 
  • “Reasons Employees look to unionize” 
  • “Good prevention practices.” 

The philosophy section states in part “It is in the best interest of our patients and staff to preclude further union representation at Mayo Clinic.” 

Leaked Mayo Clinic documents posted by Reddit user RNadvocateMCNA
Leaked Mayo Clinic documents posted by Reddit user RNadvocateMCNA

The section also states that “staff have the right to be fully informed and educated on labor relations and union representation.” 

The prevention section of the document says “prevention of further unionization is critical to maintaining the culture and work environment at the Mayo Clinic." 

The document encourages Mayo Clinic leaders to demonstrate a commitment to staff by treating employees with respect, to encourage open communication and create an environment that includes a work-life-balance and “appropriate staffing levels.” 

Leaked Mayo Clinic documents posted by Reddit user RNadvocateMCNA
Leaked Mayo Clinic documents posted by Reddit user RNadvocateMCNA

Mayo Clinic issued the following statement regarding the document leak:

The content sent inadvertently to the wrong recipient reinforces what we say often and in public— we believe that a direct relationship between management and Mayo staff benefits employees, improves communication and helps us provide the best possible care to our patients. We respect our employees and their right to make informed decisions, which is why we share factual information about what union representation may mean for everyone.  

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