Union-Represented Essential Health Care Workers Picket The Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, Say Staffing Levels Are ‘Critically Low’ - ‘Demand’ Hospital ‘Provide Appropriate Levels To Ensure Quality Care To Patients’
(NIAGARA FALLS, NEW YORK) – More than 700 Essential Health Care Workers represented by 1199 Service Employees International Union (SEIU/United Healthcare Workers East picketed outside the Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center on Wednesday (September 30th) to demand proper staffing levels inside the Western New York Hospital.
In the last several months, Caregivers have submitted 150 short staffing forms citing dangerously inadequate staffing levels throughout the hospital, which could impact the quality of care provided to patients.
“We’ve ‘been stripped down to the bone.’ ‘Some nights I’m doing beds and taking vitals because we don’t have anyone from housekeeping on,’” says 1199 SEIU Delegate Evelyn Harris, who’s worked at the institution for 43 years. “Not ‘being able to give hands on care and do all I can for my patients fractures me to my soul.”’
Union Organizers have filed charges with the New York State Labor Board for inadequate staffing levels and inappropriate floating of Staff.
Chronic short staffing has resulted in Registered Nurses (RNs) being reassigned to areas of the hospital for which they do not have proper training, 1199 SEIU Representatives said.
“This is a ‘clear violation’ of our Collective Bargaining Agreement,” 1199 SEIU Organizer Michele Jerge, an RN herself, said.
Hospital nursing management has been consistently absent from weekly meetings regarding inadequate staffing levels and grievances regarding staffing, the Union alleges.
1199 SEIU represents RNs, Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), Technicians, Professionals, Service, Dietary, Maintenance and Home Health Staff at the Niagara Falls Hospital.
For More On This Labor News Story, Go To: www.wivb.com/news/hundreds-of-union-healthcare-workers-picket-at-niagara-falls-memorial-medical-center-protesting-lack-of-staffing/