Powerful Healthcare Workers' Union, NY Hospitals Team Up To Ensure Healthcare Funding in SFY 2018/19 Budget

March 15, 2018

For Immediate Release                           Contact:

March 14, 2018                                      Mindy Berman, 518-229-0486

Brian Conway, 917-576-1966

#SecureOurCare  #CodeBlueRally


Powerful Healthcare Workers’ Union, NY Hospitals Team Up To

Ensure Healthcare Funding in SFY 2018/19 Budget


Thousands Rally At Albany Times Union Center


Albany, N.Y.In a partnership that has proved to be effective for more than a decade, the healthcare workers’ union, 1199SEIU, and the Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYHA), under the umbrella of the Healthcare Education Project (HEP), have teamed up once again to ensure adequate funding in the State budget for financially struggling healthcare institutions across New York.


Healthcare workers from across the state weathered snowstorms to attend a rally at the Times Union Center in Albany, urging the State Legislature to pass a final budget that includes adequate funding for New York’s financially struggling hospitals, nursing homes, and home care workers.  In addition to 1199SEIU healthcareworkers and a number of elected officials, rally speakers included remarks from 1199SEIU President George Gresham and GNYHA President Kenneth E. Raske.


“Washington’s cuts to healthcare have left some of New York’s most vulnerable patients struggling to maintain access to the local care they so desperately need,” said George Gresham, President of 1199SEIU.  “1199 members from all over the state came to Albany today to stand up for their patients, communities, and the good jobs that allow working men and women to live with dignity. We are looking to our elected officials here in Albany to stand up for working people by allocating the budget funding necessary to protect community healthcare access for all New Yorkers.”


“New York’s financially troubled hospitals have gone 10 years without a single Medicaid reimbursement rate increase while our costs have steadily climbed,” said GNYHA President Kenneth E. Raske. “Now, with the State’s health care funding under constant threat from Washington, the situation has become untenable. Today’s rally and our ongoing advocacy is a reminder to State legislators that it has never been more important for Albany to provide significant additional health care funding in the State budget.”


With attacks on the Affordable Care Act in Washington, talk of turning Medicaid over to states in the form of block grants, 28 hospitals on the State’s “watch list” and an alarming raft of sales and lowering of staffing standards in nursing homes, the need for the State Legislature to support healthcare funding has never been more pressing. Safety net hospitals, nursing homes, and home care agencies are all under threat, as are some of the most vulnerable communities and populations in New York.



The Healthcare Education Project (HEP) is a joint effort of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East and the Greater New York Hospital Association. Together, the two organizations represent 350,000 healthcare workers and over 250 non-for-profit hospitals, nursing homes, and home care providers. HEP’s mission is to protect and expand access to quality, affordable healthcare for all New Yorkers through education, advocacy, and coalition building.


1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. We represent over 250,000 members in New York State and 400,000 nurses and caregivers throughout Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Florida. Our mission is to achieve quality care and good jobs for all. 


The Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYHA) is a dynamic, constantly evolving center for health care advocacy and expertise, but our core mission—helping hospitals deliver the finest patient care in the most cost-effective way—never changes.