Nursing home caregivers were joined by residents as they picketed in front of Pawtucket Genesis nursing home on Gill Street Tuesday afternoon. The informational picket is part of a local campaign “to win good jobs, fair wages, and quality care” as well as a $15 minimum starting rate for caregivers. The nursing home worker contract with Genesis Health Care, the company that operates the nursing home, expired earlier in October.
As evidence that Genesis puts profits over people, SEIU 1199, the union representing the caregivers, noted that in 2016 the CEO of Genesis, George V Hager Jr, made $1.16 million.
“In Rhode Island nursing home workers need to earn a living wage to stay in the job,” said Deb Armfield, a CNA at Pawtucket Genesis for almost 28 years. “We are seeing more and more staff turnover which hurts the quality care our residents receive.”
— Steve Ahlquist (@steveahlquist) October 17, 2017
Informational pickets were also happening at Hopkins Manor and Charlesgate Nursing, said organizers.
SEIU 1199 wants you to know:
- A 2013 analysis using survey data from a nationally representative sample of 1174 nursing homes demonstrated that nursing homes with high CNA turnover had more than triple the odds of resident pain, and approximately double the odds of both pressure ulcers, and urinary tract infections.
- It is vital for Rhode Island to raise wages soon because in July of 2018 Massachusetts home health aides will be earning a minimum starting rate of $15 per hour.
- In a 2016 poll conducted by Fleming and Associates, 76 percent of Rhode Islanders said they supported paying direct care workers a minimum starting wage of $15 per hour.