More than 400 Massachusetts Healthcare Workers with 1199SEIU Win $15/Hour Wage

January 22, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact:

Laura Wareck | (978) 660-9587

Healthcare workers at Steward’s Nashoba Valley Medical Center and Holy Family Hospitals to receive wage boost to a living wage of $15/hour

Boston, MA (January 22, 2018) – More than 400 healthcare workers with 1199SEIU will soon receive a wage boost to $15/hour as part of an agreement with Steward Health Care.

The clerical, technical and service workers are employed at Steward Health Care’s Nashoba Valley Medical Center in Ayer, Holy Family Hospital in Haverhill, and Holy Family Hospital in Methuen. 1199SEIU successfully negotiated this crucial agreement, which ensures that all of its union members working at Steward Health Care – about 5,000 in total – will be making at least $15/hour as of October 31, 2019.

“This agreement enhances patient care and provides a significant wage boost to hundreds of hardworking employees at Steward Health Care,” said Tim Foley, assistant division director at 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, Massachusetts’ largest and fastest growing healthcare union. “The healthcare workers of 1199SEIU deliver tremendous care, and they should not have to struggle to support their families and make ends meet. This agreement offers a pathway to a living wage and is a win for our employees, patients and communities.”

1199SEIU supports the national Fight for $15 campaign and has continuously pushed for higher wages and paid family and medical leave – as the prevalence of low-wage workers cuts across a variety of industries, including healthcare. Many workers in low-wage jobs struggle to provide for their families and oftentimes are forced to depend on public assistance.

“Because of this increase I can now stay working for Holy Family,” said Parker Moody, who has worked in the food service department at Holy Family Methuen for the past four years. “I recently got engaged and I have to think about having a family and want to buy a house. I knew I couldn’t do that at my current wage rate, so I was thinking of leaving. I really like my job here and I appreciate the fact that now I can stay here with a better wage and great benefits.”

“Steward is proud to be providing not just world-class health care to the communities we serve, but also high quality jobs with great benefits and wages that recognize the important contributions of the entire health care team. Health care is a major part of the Massachusetts economy and at Steward we believe it is important that health care jobs offer good wages and benefits to local workers and families,” said John Polanowicz, Executive Vice President of Steward’s, hospital services division. “Steward has been lifting up and strengthening communities since its inception, saving hospitals and advancing an innovative accountable care model that emphasizes preventative, patient-centered care. We are proud to be working with 1199 and our Massachusetts employees in partnership on this issue. As one of the largest employers in the state, Steward has distinguished itself repeatedly with a forward thinking approach to ensuring the entire health care team benefits from rewarding work in service of our patients.”

About 5,000 1199SEIU Massachusetts members work at Steward Health Care at Carney Hospital (Dorchester), Good Samaritan Medical Center (Brockton), Norwood Hospital, St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center (Brighton), Morton Hospital (Taunton), Holy Family Hospital at Haverhill, Holy Family Hospital in Methuen, and Nashoba Valley Medical Center (Ayer).

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Representing more than 56,000 healthcare workers throughout Massachusetts and over 400,000 workers across the East Coast, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. Our mission is to achieve affordable, high quality healthcare for all. 1199SEIU is part of the 2.1 million member Service Employees International Union.