Families Of Residents Living At Bankrupt Delmar Long-Term Care Facilities, And Healthcare Workers, Announce Town Hall MeetingFebruary 7, 2020
Contact: Mindy Berman | 516.229.0486
Good Samaritan Nursing Home & Kenwood Manor Healthcare Workers Send Letter To Bankruptcy Court Judge
WHAT: TOWN HALL MEETING:
Is Quality Care At Risk At Good Samaritan Nursing Home & Kenwood Manor Assisted Living?
WHEN: THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 13, 2020
5:30PM - 7:30PM
WHERE: Bethlehem YMCA
900 Delaware Avenue
Albany, NY It’s been three weeks since the healthcare workers at Good Samaritan Nursing Home and Kenwood Manor in Delmar, NY (members of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East) withdrew their notice to strike. The workers postponed their plans to hold a three-day strike on January 24, 25, and 26 after the prospective new buyer of the financially distressed facilities, Centers Health Care, agreed to negotiate a contract with the union. Negotiations have been ongoing, but the healthcare workers say they do not yet have an agreement that will stop the exodus of qualified caregivers and offer decent job opportunities to new workers. In the meantime, according to the workers and families of the residents, the staff shortage is a crisis.
Marsha Hanson, whose husband Paul is a resident at Good Samaritan said, “This is not fair to anyone. The caregivers can’t be in two or three places at once. If they are with one resident, they can’t give attention to the other people who need care and comfort. It’s stressful for everyone.”
“Adding to that worry, we, the families of the residents have little information about the bankruptcy or the sale of the nursing home. We don’t know if we should look for another home. How do we know there still won’t be staffing problems or that the care won’t decline?”
Ms. Hanson and Robbin Colandrea, whose mother Brenda lives at Good Samaritan, said that many people have questions about the future of the facilities and that since the current owner, The Lutheran Care Network (TLCN), and the prospective buyer, Centers Health Care, have not been forthcoming with information, the Town Hall Meeting is necessary.
Ms. Colandrea said, “I received information from TLCN in the mail, and it was the bankruptcy notice, which left me with more questions than answers. For more than four years, I have been involved with the nursing home, both of my parents were here at one point. I have watched a dramatic decline in the ability to deliver quality care. This is something we all should be talking about.”
In December, after struggling with financial problems for several years, TLCN filed for bankruptcy. With the facilities in shambles, only one for-profit corporation, Centers Health Care, stepped up to buy them. Per the request of Centers, the bankruptcy hearing date has been moved for the second time, from February 12 to February 25.
Meanwhile, the caregivers have sent a letter to the bankruptcy judge, reiterating their concern that undermining the health benefits in their contract will force experienced caregivers to leave, which will aggravate short-staffing and put quality care at risk. (Attached.)
1199SEIU Executive Vice President Greg Speller said, “If we don’t see a contract that addresses our concerns about maintaining and improving quality care after the Town Hall Meeting and the bankruptcy hearing, the workers will reconsider striking. That’s not anyone’s first choice. It’s time for everyone, the residents, their families, and the workers and theirs, to have peace of mind.”
There are approximately sixty 1199SEIU members at Good Samaritan Nursing Home and sixteen at Kenwood Manor. The nursing home is a 120-bed facility and Kenwood Manor has 67 rooms.
1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. We represent over 400,000 nurses and caregivers throughout New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Florida. Our mission is to achieve quality care and good jobs for all.