Orlando Health asks for extension to respond to NLRB accusations

Updated:

ORLANDO, Fla. —

WFTV found out that one of Orlando's largest employers asked for more time to respond to allegations they violated federal law.

Orlando Health was slapped with 10 potential violations from the National Labor Relations Board.

Officials there said they only need a few more days and plan to file a response to the paperwork on or before Feb. 20.

WFTV obtained documents filed by the National Labor Relations Board against Orlando Health administrators, accusing them of potentially violating federal law 10 times.

Employees told national investigators they were kicked out of Dr. Phillips Hospital, South Seminole Hospital in Longwood and Winnie Palmer while trying to distribute information about a union while off the clock.

There's been an effort to form a union since pay changes were announced at Orlando Health last August.

At the very beginning of that effort, then CEO Sherrie Sitarik was named as a potential violator.

Less than a month before Sitarik resigned an employee said the boss cornered her to ask about union activity.

“For it to be our first encounter actually speaking face to face, and for her to say these things to me it was definitely out of the ordinary,” nurse Sarah Collins said.

Administrators had until Friday to respond but have filed for an extension with the NLRB, asking for more time to properly respond to a series of complaints they told WFTV earlier are commonplace when unions are being formed.

“It's a common tactic unions use straight out of their playbook to try to keep employers off guard,” said hospital spokesperson Kena Lewis.

Orlando Health administrators will have to go before a judge and have asked to set that hearing for the end of March.