Planned nursing home strikes are postponed after caregivers reach tentative agreement with final nursing home chain
PENNSYLVANIA — Caregivers at Priority nursing homes have reached a tentative contract agreement with the nursing home operator on Monday, putting on hold plans for a historic one-day strike that workers had announced for Tuesday, July 27.
Nursing home workers at a total of 53 Pennsylvania nursing homes reached tentative agreements as of this week.
Throughout the pandemic and in preceding years, caregivers for our most vulnerable citizens have faced overwhelming challenges — dwindling staff, poverty wages, and a pandemic that took the lives of thousands of their residents, coworkers, and family. Throughout it all, they have maintained a tireless call for reform.
“Our new agreements move us in the right direction but they are only a first step in an urgent and larger conversation about reforming our long-term care system,” said Matthew Yarnell, President of SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania, which represents thousands of nursing home workers across the state. “Pennsylvanians who need assistance should receive it in the setting of their choice, whether a nursing home or their home. But whatever they choose, the quality of their care relies on workers having good union wages and benefits. This is how we attract and retain frontline workers and have the staff we need. That’s the conversation we will be having over the next 12 months.”
Workers now will meet with their coworkers over the next few weeks to review the details of the agreements and hold ratification votes. Details of the new contracts will be shared when the ratification process is complete.
“This is definitely a good day, but our work isn’t done,” said Barb Kozar, CNA at the Grove at Harmony. “These agreements will improve conditions and care in our homes, but it really is only the first step. We need to change care delivery for the better. We need nursing home operators to continue working with us to make these jobs that people really want to have so we can really improve care at the bedside.”
For more information contact James Myers, firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-479-2213
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SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania is the state’s largest and fastest-growing union of nurses and healthcare workers, uniting nearly 45,000 nurses, professional and technical employees, direct care workers, and service employees in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, home- and community-based services, and state facilities across the Commonwealth. SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania members are committed to improving the lives of health care workers and ensuring quality care and healthy communities for all Pennsylvanians.