x
Breaking News
More () »

California nursing home staffers call for higher pay, more benefits and safer staffing levels

They're calling for the state's surplus fund to create a standards board made up of 16 members under the Health and Human Services Agency.

CALIFORNIA, USA — Local SEIU 2015, the union that represents hundreds of thousands of California long-term care workers, said enough is enough. They’re calling on the legislature to act now before more staff members quit their jobs, referring to it as "the great resignation."

They want to use the state surplus budget to create a standards board. That board would establish a better minimum wage and better benefits like health care. 

"You’ve seen those posters out in front of the facilities you work at, 'Heroes Work Here'," state Senator Henry Stern said. "Then you go home and you have to choose between paying your bills and putting food on the table." 

Stern and others spoke at an event honoring the frontline healthcare workers who lost their lives to COVID-19 Monday morning. For those that are left, they said the message is that heroes should be treated like heroes.

"Nearly 250 have perished," President of SEIU April Verrett said. "We must never ever forget they perished while caring for others."

They're calling for the state's surplus fund to create a standards board made up of 16 members under the Health and Human Services Agency. 

The board would set: 

  • Minimum wages
  • Safe staffing level requirements
  • Strengthen benefits for caregivers, including access to healthcare and paid sick leave
  • Enforcing certain training requirements

"A new entity to be created in this budget cycle," Verrett said.

The California Association of Health Facilities, which represents the majority of the skilled nursing centers in California, sent a statement in response to the proposal. 

"Unlike SEIU, we are calling for a real wage increase for CNAs right now. The most pressing issue facing the skilled nursing profession is the lack of a living wage for certified nurse assistants (CNAs). CAHF has launched a Drive to 25 campaign to urge the state to raise CNA wages to $25 an hour by 2025. We are also seeking more RN coverage, increased funds for workforce development and a study regarding staffing levels."

WATCH ALSO: 

How the SCUSD teachers strike is impacting the district's classified staff members

Paid Advertisement

Before You Leave, Check This Out