Strengthening Our Unity & Raising Our Voices in Lynn

July 7, 2017

At the heart of any organizing or advocacy is the simple act of a conversation. With the help of our community allies, Lynn residents and elected officials, we 1199ers have spent the last year sharing ideas about how best to address the healthcare needs for Lynn. We’ve conversed during community forums and city meetings, on street corners, at bus stops and in the hospital cafeteria. Guided by the recommendations outlined in the Community Health Needs Assessment we commissioned last year, we prioritized maintaining emergency services in Lynn at the current site, improving transportation and access to Salem for those affected by the closing of a full-service hospital in Lynn and ensuring that expanded services at Salem Hospital meet the cultural and other unique needs of Lynn residents.

In partnership with our allies, we have identified action items and key leaders from the community to help move our policy priorities forward. One important next step that resulted from our advocacy is a public forum to hear from the Emergent/Urgent Care Planning Group, a committee charged with exploring options for emergent care in Lynn following the closure of Union Hospital. This meeting is scheduled for Thursday, July 20 at 6:00 p.m. in the Union Hospital cafeteria. It’s important that we 1199ers attend and make our voices heard on this critical issue.

At the hospital, we have faced several challenges with steadfast resolve. When the hospital announced layoffs in March, we exercised our contractual protections and had conversations with management to minimize the impact on patient care. Following the layoffs, the nursing floors were consolidated into West1, and our RN’s and support staff have offered proposals for best practices on the newly merged unit. Finally, NSMC has resubmitted its Salem expansion plan to Mass DPH, shrinking the previously proposed plan which has raised concerns and questions. Despite this uncertainty, we continue to demand full transparency from NSMC and remain committed to providing the best patient care.

While we’ve made good progress to understand the impact of Union Hospital’s closure and address our community’s health needs, we have more work to do to ensure our community maintains quality care and protects good healthcare jobs. We must continue to strengthen our unity and raise our voices with our allies to promote a healthy future for Lynn.

For more context and information, read 1199SEIU Vice President Filaine Deronnette's op-ed in the Lynn Daily Item.

On Thursday, May 18, 2017, 1199ers joined our allies from the New Lynn Coalition, the North Shore Labor Council, Neighbor to Neighbor and the Massachusetts Education Fund in sending a letter to the Lynn Urgent/Emergent Care Planning Group demanding a public forum to share their findings and recommendations with the Lynn community.

Due to our advocacy and public pressure, the planning group has agreed to our demands and will hold a public forum on Thursday, July 20 at 6:00PM at the NSMC Union Hospital Cafeteria. Feel free to reach out to administrative organizer Mark Lindsey at or (617) 378-5341.

Thursday, July 20 at 6:00PM
Union Hospital Cafeteria
500 Lynnfield St, Lynn, MA 01904