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News ::
Star of David employees to rally Friday for improved staffing
25 Apr 2002
Fed up with management's refusal to provide enough staff or improve conditions, employees at the Star of David Nursing, Rehabilitation and Alzheimer's Center will picket on Friday, April 26 from 2:30 pm to 4:00 pm.
"We organized our union because we want to improve care for our residents and gain a voice in the decision making process," said Joe Marseille, a CNA who has worked at Star of David for 14 years. "But Kindred management has fought us every step of the way. We're hoping our rally will focus the public's attention on the need for immediate improvements at Star of David.”

Chronic understaffing undercuts resident care. A 2002 federal study issued by the Department of Health and Human Services found "strong evidence supports the relationship between increases in nurse staffing ratios and avoidance of critical quality of care problems in nursing homes.

“Another major issue for us is the high cost of health insurance," Marseille added. "Many employees just can't afford the more than $200 per month that Star of David currently charges us."

Almost half the nursing aides at the home make less than ten dollars an hour. The high cost of health insurance contributes to a huge annual employee turnover rate.

Star of David is owned by Kindred Healthcare, (formally Vencor) the largest nursing home operator in Massachusetts with more than 20 homes in the Boston metropolitan area. Nationally, the company owns and manages more than 300 skilled nursing centers in 32 states.

Caregivers formed a union with SEIU Local 285 last October. The new union of about 90 employees includes CNAs, housekeeping, laundry, dietary and maintenance personnel at the West Roxbury home. Employees at four other homes in Massachusetts managed by Kindred are already members of SEIU.

SEIU Local 285 is a statewide union of health care workers and public employees with more than 11,000 members. The local union represents workers at more than 50 hospitals, health clinics, and nursing homes in Massachusetts.

Be sure to check out our latest press releases at the "Local Media Center" on SEIU Local 285's website at
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