Around Our Regions: St. Barnabas Workers Celebrate Reinstatement

July 14, 2020


Dental Assistants from Union Community Health Center (UCHC) in the Bronx, which is affiliated with nearby St. Barnabas Hospital (SBH) rallied May 26 to celebrate their reinstatement and press St. Barnabas for crisis pay. The UCHC dental assistants were sent to St. Barnabas when their clinic closed in the surge of the COVID-19 crisis. Instead of being assigned work for which they were appropriately trained, they were given tasks far beyond their scope of work, including working with psychiatric patients and moving dead bodies. When they complained, St. Barnabas’ management sent them home. After three weeks of pressure from Union representatives and delegates, SBH reinstated the workers with full back pay.

The rally also celebrated the reinstatement of four SBH Registered Nurses who were unfairly dismissed for using their COVID-19 leave time.

Dental Assistant Daniel Recuero helped lead the effort to pressure St. Barnabas into doing the right thing.

“No healthcare worker deserves to be treated this way,” said Recuero. “Every single one of us should be treated with the dignity and respect that all front-line healthcare workers deserve. We have done our best for St. Barnabas and UCHC. We expect them to do the right thing for us!”

1199 Magazine | May / June 2020