Exhausted and Grieving, Nursing Home Workers At The Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care & Rehabilitation Will Hold Silent Vigil

May 28, 2020


Contact: Mindy Berman, 518.229.0486 | Timothy Rodgers, 518.610.0438

WHAT: Frontline nursing home workers at The Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care & Rehabilitation, members of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, will hold a silent and solemn vigil, expressing their grief and concern. The nursing home has the highest number of COVID-19 deaths of any of the 362 nursing homes in New York that have reported the virus fatalities. According to the New York State Department of Health, there were 82 confirmed coronavirus-related deaths at Parker Jewish as of May 26.

The workers have been facing enormous challenges that include:

Severe short-staffing;
Lack of appropriate PPE and the training to properly use it;
Refusal by management to acknowledge the risks and sacrifices that are being made during the COVID-19 crisis;
Failure to recognize the grief and loss being experienced by caregivers;
Unwillingness to provide crisis pay.

WHEN/WHERE: THURSDAY, MAY 28 3:15 p.m.-3:45 p.m. Parker Jewish Institute for Healthcare & Rehabilitation 271-11 76th Ave, New Hyde Park, NY

Photo opportunities and interviews will be available at the site for 30 minutes. Under pandemic circumstances, it may not be possible to interview the participants face to face. 1199SEIU will arrange phone/Zoom/etc. interviews by request, either before or after the vigil. (518.229.0486 )

This is a silent vigil. There will be no chanting and no milling around. The vigil will follow all public health laws that have been instituted during the pandemic. All participants will be wearing masks and will be standing at least 6 ft to 10 ft apart.

1199SEIU is calling on the Parker Jewish administration and all nursing home owners and operators to respect and protect residents and workers by:

Communicating with transparency to residents, families and workers;
Instituting all required infection control measures, beginning with cohorting residents
Ensuring that residents have the ability to communicate regularly with their loved ones;
Providing appropriate and fitting personal protective equipment to workers on every unit;
Providing fully paid sick leave for workers who are ill and/or required to quarantine;
Recognizing the dedication of workers by providing crisis pay;
Implementing the newly-required worker testing without any additional cost to workers.


1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. We represent over 450,000 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. For more information: http://www.1199seiu.org/ Please check out https://1199onthefrontlines.org/