OAKLAND, Calif. – Healthcare workers will hold a vigil and give speeches at Kaiser Permanente Oakland Medical Center in protest of Kaiser’s announcement that it will eliminate hundreds of jobs at several facilities, including 33 patient care technicians in Oakland.
“As patient care technician, we’re the front line in the hospital, we feed, bathe, and provide comfort to people who need it most. We knew the risks of working in a hospital during a pandemic, but we went in anyways because we truly care about helping our patients,” said Brittany Turner, a patient care technician at Kaiser Permanente Oakland. “And now they’re laying off dozens of us after all we’ve been through? Not only am I concerned about how I’ll be able to provide for my family, but I’m also worried that our patients will suffer if they don’t get the care they need.”
While Kaiser Permanente is eliminating 276 positions throughout the state, workers are questioning why the Oakland facility was singled out for cutbacks in bedside care.
“Targeting Oakland for cutbacks in patient care raises serious concerns about health equity,” said Fay Eastman, a patient care technician at Kaiser Permanente Oakland. “Our community deserves the same level of bedside care as the other communities Kaiser operates in. Why is the hospital in Oakland taking all the direct care cuts?”
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SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) is a healthcare justice union of more than 100,000 healthcare workers, patients, and healthcare activists united to ensure affordable, accessible, high-quality care for all Californians, provided by valued and respected healthcare workers. Learn more at www.seiu-uhw.org.