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News :: Labor
Caregivers to testify about crisis in nursing homes
14 Apr 2004
A special panel will hear testimony at the State House on April 13 from nursing home caregivers about how short staffing, poor working conditions and low pay and benefits impact the quality of care.
The panel is an innovative "workers' rights board" convened by Massachusetts Jobs with Justice. Members of the panel include leaders from religious, civil rights, senior, legal and health care constituencies.

Seven nursing home caregivers are expected to testify; including workers from: Mercy Care Center in Springfield, Eagle Pond Rehab in South Dennis, Courtyard Nursing Care in Medford, West Park Alzheimer & Nursing Center (formerly Star of David) in West Roxbury, Beverly Manor in Plymouth, Academy Manor in Andover, and Coolidge House Nursing Care in Brookline.

On April 7, New Bedford's City Council passed a resolution in support improved working conditions and staffing ratios. Similar resolutions are pending before city councils in Boston, Springfield, Lowell, Medford and other cities.

The hearing and the council resolutions are part of a statewide campaign linked to contract negotiations this spring for thousands of nursing home workers who are united in SEIU Local 2020. Union members are seeking agreements that will provide living wages, affordable health insurance, secure retirement, and dignity and respect for all employees. In addition to Jobs with Justice, the campaign is backed by dozens of community, health advocacy, religious, and senior organizations.

For a list of the caregivers who will testify at the hearing, contact SEIU Local 2020 President Celia Wcislo at 617 442-4100.

For a list of the members of the Workers' Rights Board, contact Jobs with Justice Director Russ Davis at 617 524-8778.
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