Three months into the coronavirus pandemic, more than 44,000 residents and nursing home workers have died. We believe that every worker and every nursing home resident has an essential human right to live and to thrive. We believe that every worker — Black, white, brown, Asian Pacific Islander — deserves the support and protections to keep themselves, their families and their communities safe. We believe that by demanding a seat at the table for every nursing home worker and holding corporations and elected leaders accountable, we can transform the work we do and ensure the highest quality of care.
These are our demands:
- Racial and economic justice for all workers — Black, brown, white Asian Pacific Islander and immigrant nursing home workers — so that regardless of the color of our skin or where we come from, we can all care for ourselves and our own families.
- Unions for all nursing home workers so that we have a voice in delivering care and can make these low-paying, dangerous jobs into good jobs. United in our union, we can negotiate better wages, benefits and protections standards for all nursing home workers.
- Frontline workers should have a voice at state tables to establish health, safety and employment standards across the industry. This means stronger state regulations to hold nursing home corporations accountable for health and safety violations, targeted PPE distribution, accountability for federal relief dollars
- A clear, specific plan to address the racial disparities in care for Black and Brown residents that COVID-19 has exposed.
- The personal protective equipment (PPE) we need to keep ourselves, residents and our communities safe, including: gloves, face shields or goggles, and protective clothing and N-95 respirators where needed.
- Paid sick days, double-time hazard pay, and free COVID-19 testing and treatment for all nursing home workers so that no one is forced to go to work sick and risk spreading illness.
- Family-sustaining wages and affordable healthcare, so that we can live healthy lives without fear of missing a bill payment or ending up in the emergency room because we can’t afford to see a doctor.
- Enough staff to keep workers and residents safe and provide the highest quality care. All residents — Black, Latino, Asian Pacific Islander or white — deserve the best care possible.
- The end of legal protections for nursing home corporations and employers who have failed to protect all nursing home workers and residents so that every employer can be held accountable to nursing home workers, residents and family members, and taxpayers.
- Sufficient funding for nursing homes, with clear requirements that state and federal funding goes to resident care, not corporate profits.
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) unites 2 million diverse members in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, including more than 75,000 nursing home workers. SEIU members working in the healthcare industry, in the public sector and in property services believe in the power of joining together on the job to win higher wages and benefits and to create better communities while fighting for a more just society and an economy that works for all of us, not just corporations and the wealthy.
Protect All Workers
Workers at the forefront of the coronavirus pandemic launched Protect All Workers, a demand calling on leading industries — from airlines to hospitals to fast-food and beyond — to take immediate, sweeping, and concrete actions to protect the health, safety and financial security of all workers in America. Backed by the 2 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and workers in the Fight for $15 and a Union, Protect All Workers is mobilizing thousands of working people to pressure corporate leaders and elected officials to protect all workers amid the global pandemic and economic crisis.