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Statement from SEIU Healthcare PA Nurse on Today’s Protest in the Capitol

For Immediate Release: May 15, 2020

Statement from Maureen Casey, RN, member of SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania, regarding protestors at the Capitol putting lives at risk by ignoring medical experts on PA Recovery:

“Nurses and other caregivers have put our lives on the line daily to combat this deadly pandemic. For us it is more than a job, it is a moral and ethical duty, and we are committed to protecting the health of not only our patients but everyone in our community. We have never faced anything like this – We are exhausted and often frightened, but we have made an oath to care for others and we intend to honor it.

Too many people have died from COVID-19 and it doesn’t have to be this way. The vast majority of Pennsylvanians want a safe recovery guided by science and medical experts as Governor Wolf has outlined. The small percentage of people who choose to recklessly protest while ignoring social distancing guidelines and basic safety precautions put everyone at risk. This virus is real and it is deadly.

Nurses and healthcare workers across the state know what is needed to safely move forward to flatten the curve, save lives, and make sure this never happens again. We need:

  • Permanent Preparedness for Healthcare Crises: Stockpiled personal protective equipment and widespread, rapid, accurate testing and contact tracing.
  • Essential Benefits for Essential Workers: Paid sick time and essential worker pay.
  • A Healthcare System Driven by Care, Not Profit: Safe patient limits for hospitals and nursing homes and fair funding for home care.
  • A Strong and Respected Voice for Frontline Staff: Caregivers need a seat at every table where healthcare decisions are being made.”

SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania is the state’s largest and fastest-growing union of nurses and healthcare workers, uniting nearly 45,000 nurses, professional and technical employees, direct care workers, and service employees in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, home and community- based services, and State facilities across the Commonwealth. SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania members are committed to improving the lives of health care workers and ensuring quality care and healthy communities for all Pennsylvanians.

For more information contact: James Myers at james.myers@seiuhcpa.org or 215-479-2213

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