CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Striking nursing home workers have been continuing to plan picket line events as solidarity builds, and Labor Day was no exception.
Strikes on Labor Day used to occur with some regularity in past decades, but they have become rarer. This year, though, dozens of nursing home workers were picketing outside The Gardens of West Shore. They are among many more nursing home workers on strike across Pennsylvania.
“We are out here in the rain, and we might be getting wet, but our spirits certainly are not damp,” said food service worker Claire Eichelberger.
The workers have been on strike since Friday because of unsuccessful contract negotiations with nursing home owners Priority Healthcare and Comprehensive Healthcare.
This comes months after the state approved $600 million for caregiving in nursing homes. Workers say they advocated alongside management to urge legislators to give them the funding in the state budget.
“We worked hard to get that. We were down at the Capitol, we were going in and talking to the legislators. We were down there, and we worked hard to get that, and the owners of Priority, they were just sitting back waiting for us to do all the hard work, and now that we got all the work done, now they don’t even want to give us any of it,” said Certified Nursing Assistant Liz Wright.
abc27 is still working to get a comment from the companies that own the nursing homes.