Workers at the American Red Cross Mid-Michigan chapter are on the picket line, after a strike deadline passed without a deal.
Red Cross spokeswoman Monica Stoneking says the strike will drastically reduce blood collection efforts in 65 Michigan counties:
"In the Great Lakes region alone, we need to collect about 700 units of blood every day to meet the hospital needs and the needs of the patients we serve, and not being able to collect those blood products really puts our blood supply in jeopardy," said Stoneking.
Stoneking hopes negotiations will resolve the standoff soon.
"We're preparing for at least ten days," said Stoneking. "We're calling on other regions that aren’t affected by the union to increase our blood collection so that our national blood supply is healthy."
The strike affects about 280 nurses and staff who handle blood. They’ve been working without a contract since 2008.
Union officials say the two sides are far apart on many issues.
Talks are scheduled to resume September 17.