Healthcare Workers Stand Together in Cleveland for PPE – Nursing Home Workers Nationwide Say Their Lives Are at Risk

PPE CLE
For Immediate Release: Thursday, June 11, 2020.

Press Contact: Anthony Caldwell, acaldwell@seiu1199.org, 877-419-7348.

 

CLEVELAND, OHIO – On Thursday, June 11th, Cleveland nursing home workers held “PPE patrols” and visited four local nursing homes to draw attention to the need for protective equipment, safe staffing, and quality care, amid the COVID19 pandemic.

 
Data compiled by the Ohio Department of Health shows that 124 nursing home residents in Cuyahoga County have died from COVID19 since April 15th. Workers visited nursing homes, which included Suburban Healthcare, McGregor, Eliza Bryant, and Judson.

 
Tragically, a worker with Suburban Healthcare represented by SEIU District 1199 and dear co-worker to many members recently passed away after contracting COVID19. “Having adequate PPE, widespread facility testing, safe staffing, these are matters of survival and preventing an outbreak during this pandemic,” said Samara Knight, Regional Director with SEIU District 1199. “If as a society we call them heroes, we must also make sure they have enough PPE. They should be getting hazard pay and they are speaking out because of the risks they face along with their families,” continued Knight.


Data from the Ohio Department of Health released in the evening on June 10th shows that in Ohio, 823 long-term care residents have an active COVID19 infection. Currently, 392 long-long-term care workers also have COVID19. Since April 15
th, 1,376 long-term care residents in Ohio have passed away after becoming sick with the virus.

 
“Nursing home workers were never given the appreciation they deserved to begin with before this pandemic. They need support from the public and they are speaking out to protect themselves and also to protect the residents for whom they provide the best possible care,” concluded Knight.


On Tuesday, June 9th, Time Magazine released the results of a national survey of nursing home workers conducted by the Service Employees International Union. Many Ohio workers participated in this survey, which showed that 76% of workers did not think their employers were doing enough to ensure access to personal protective equipment (PPE). The survey also found that 78% of nursing home workers say that their “life is at risk every day” due to the COVID19 pandemic.

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