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Nursing home workers rally against worsening conditions in Ontario

November 4, 2022
Image: Picture of Steelworkers from Plantagenet, ON with a USW banner.

The front-line staff at Pinecrest Nursing Home, in Plantagenet, Ont., have faced unprecedented challenges and stress for the last several years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, Pinecrest’s corporate ownership continues to demand concessions from workers, including cuts to sick pay and sick time accumulation, and placing an unfair burden on employees to access prescription medication.

The essential workers at Pinecrest and members of Local 9211 took to the street outside the nursing home on Tuesday, Oct. 18, to vocalize their anger and let the community know what they’re experiencing.

“Given what we’ve endured throughout the pandemic, it’s shameful that this corporation wants to weaken our working and living standards, rather than improve conditions,” said Diane Gariépy, president of USW Local 9211 and member of the local’s bargaining committee.

“The front-line staff have gone above the call of duty to care for the residents and keep the facility running for the last two and a half years,” she said. “Not only is there no appreciation from this employer, they want to make things worse.”

Through provincial legislation enforced by Doug Ford’s government, the Pinecrest Nursing Home employees are denied the right to strike to try to improve their working conditions.

The workers and the company have since resumed negotiations.

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