Parkview Nurses Deliver Patient Safety Message
In three days of our Parkview RN strike, we sent a powerful message to CEO Steve Popkin that Unfair Labor Practices = Unsafe Patient Care, and that Parkview RNs deserve respect and to have our voices heard on behalf of our patients.
"We are professionals. We need to be heard. If we are not heard, we need to take action." --Linda Hippolyte, RN, PRNA Secretary
Hundreds of Parkview RNs, other UNAC/UHCP and AFSCME members, and Parkview workers from SEIU UHW, as well as carwash workers from the Clean Carwash union, plus families, neighbors and friends, picketed Parkview Community Hospital Medical Center in Riverside over the Independence Weekend, and rallied in Hunt Park last Thursday, Day One of the strike.
"Seven years ago a group of courageous nurses reached out to UNAC/UHCP to form their union. The fight this year is similar to the fight seven years ago. PRNA members need a voice in how care is delivered. They need the ability to address their issues with patient care, and they need to be treated with respect and dignity." --Ken Deitz, RN, UNAC/UHCP President
We caught the attention of ABC Channel 7, who interviewed Linda Hippolyte, RN; Telemundo, who interviewed Judy Vargas, RN, and The Riverside Press-Enterprise.
Look for more photos and quotes from all three days on UNAC/UHCP’s Facebook page.
On July 3, over 200 Parkview RNs walked the picket lines over the course of the day, from 7 AM to 7 PM. At 11:00 we crowded into Hunt Park, where Rabbi Suzanne Singer of Temple Beth El in Riverside, and Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice (CLUE) gave the invocation. “In my tradition,” she said, “Workers cannot be bound to a labor contract that violates human rights.”
RNs waved and carried signs that read, “Patient Care is an Inalienable Right” and “Patients First.” Signs in the spirit of the holiday read, “Patient Safety is Patriotic,” “United States of Patient Care,” and “Don’t Tread on my Patients.” Vehicles passing by honked support at RNs who waved signs that said “Honk if You Love Nurses.”
Other rally speakers included Bill Perez, Secretary-Treasurer of the Building and Construction Trades Council in San Bernardino, who told gathered Parkview RNs that 29 of his locals and 14,000 members stand with them.
“My mother was a patient at Parkview recently. You can bet she didn’t brag about the CEO and his spreadsheets. She bragged about her nurses.” —Bill Perez, Building and Construction Trades
Parkview RNs Megan Joyce, Viera Daniels, Linda Hippolyte and Judy Vargas also addressed the crowd, followed by UNAC/UHCP President Ken Deitz, RN.
California State Senator Richard Roth, a longtime supporter of PRNA, joined us on the picket lines and gave us words of encouragement.
California State Assembly member Jose Medina, also a consistent supporter of Parkview RNs, visited our picket lines and offered his own supportive counsel.
Back to Work
On Sunday morning, the first day after our strike, UNAC/UHCP President Ken Deitz escorted Parkview RNs, who showed up bright-and-early and ready to work, including PRNA President Debby Cruz. They were turned away by security, in favor of continued shifts given to outside nurses for two more days.
We continue to fight Parkview’s unfair labor practices at the National Labor Relations Board. We'll keep you updated.
We must stay strong and stay together for our patients and each other. Look for updates about the next steps in our fight for respect and a strong voice for RNs in patient care at Parkview.
“Your support and us sticking together is what’s making this all happen.” –Judy Vargas, RN
This is Our Moment! Stay Strong! Stand Together!