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Nurses Win Ruling for Unemployment Benefits

(CN) - A group of hospital nurses are entitled to unemployment benefits for the time they were on strike, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled.

St. John's Mercy Medical Center sought review of the Labor and Industrial Commission's decision that nurses are eligible for the benefits.

Judge Price ruled that they are, because the hospital was found guilty of unfair labor practices during the strike.

The contract between St. John's and the United Food and Commercial Workers union required the hospital to dismiss nurses who refused to join the union. St. John's was found guilty of unfair labor practices three times for this reason.

The nurses went on strike for 37 days beginning in December 2004.

"At the time claimants went on strike," Price wrote, "St. John's unfair labor practices ... had been going on for over two and a half years. Claimants also produced evidence that they were motivated to strike, in part, in response to the unfair labor practices."

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