Los Angeles nurses to join 139 nationwide ‘May Day’ actions demanding COVID-19 protections for nurses, health care workers
Los Angeles area nurses will be marking Friday, May 1—International Workers Day, also known as “May Day”—with shift change actions calling for optimal COVID-19 protections. These local actions are part of nurse actions taking place at 139 hospitals in 13 states representing 95,542 nurses, according to National Nurses United (NNU).
Nurses say their demand for optimal PPE is underscored by the fact that more than 60 nurses across the country have died of COVID-19, although due to lack of testing, the number is surely higher.
“Nurses signed up to care for their patient. They did not sign up to sacrifice their lives on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said NNU Executive Director Bonnie Castillo, RN. “On this day that celebrates the labor movement and working people, union nurses are standing up to demand the protections they need now!”
““We’re not asking for much. We’re only asking to keep our patients, healthcare workers and the public safe” said Dan O’Kelly ER Nurse of USC Verdugo Hills”
“Disinfection and reuse of PPE is an unsafe and dangerous practice driven by supposed supply issues, not by science. Nurses deserve to have safe working conditions, so they don’t expose themselves or their families to this disease’ said Kerri Dodgens, ICU Float pool Nurse of Keck Hospital of USC”
“We need additional staff with the anticipation of urgent COVID 19 rule-out patients coming in, Beverly Schrage Hem/Onc/BMT RN of Norris Hospital of USC.”
“Our top priority is the safety of our patients and our coworkers. It would hurt me deeply if myself and my peers were to contract COVID 19 because we do not have sufficient PPE,” said Amanda Mathe, 4 Tele COVID Unit RN, of Methodist Hospital.
“The Healthcare workers should be the first line of defense against this virus, how can we be that without the necessary protective equipment to fight this virus” Desiress Molina, Certified Nursing Assistance, of Methodist Hospital”
“Union represented UC workers across the University of California are calling on local management, the UC Office of the President and the UC regents to provide all UC workers with the highest level of workplace safety, access to PPE and testing and the necessary staffing to protect all UC workers, our patients, our families and our communities.”
“Without adequate Personal Protective Equipment and safe staffing, we cannot keep ourselves, our patients, or our communities safe,” said Aviana Springs, RN, of PIH Health-Good Samaritan Hospital. “
National Nurses United registered nurse members are calling on employers and the government to provide nurses and other health care workers with the highest level of protections, including powered air-purifying respirators, and single use of N95s and coveralls that incorporate head coverings and shoe coverings, and gloves. Otherwise, hospitals will remain fomites for infection, say NNU RNs, and nurses and health care workers will continue to get sick and sidelined, die, and be unable to care for the next wave of patients.
Nurses say it’s clear that the industry thinks they have produced an acceptable solution to the PPE shortage by implementing widespread use of various N95 decontamination systems. This is unacceptable and unsafe, say nurses, who are calling on President Trump to activate the Defense Production Act to order the mass production of PPE. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) must also pass an emergency temporary standard to mandate that healthcare employers provide protections needed for COVID-19, say nurses.
Los Angeles-area May Day actions will take place at the following locations/times on Friday, May 1:
Keck Hospital of USC- Keck Medicine of USC Hospitals
1500 San Pablo St. Los Angeles CA 90033
Time: 8:00am press conference
Contact: Henry Soria 702-496-0922
300 Huntington Dr, Arcadia, CA 91007
Time: 8:00 a.m press conference
Contact: Kenny Sylvain 747-270-9286
UCLA Medical Center
757 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, Ca 90095
11:30 a.m. – press conference
12 p.m. – UCLA worker caravan & honk-a-thon
Contact: Maria Vivanco, (510) 715-6924, or Kadie Manion, 747-240-8540
PIH Health-Good Samaritan Hospital
1225 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90017 (between Lucas Ave. and Witmer St.)
6:30 p.m.- 8 p.m.
Contact: Margarita Gamino 747-228-8492
Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center
4867 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90027
Staging Area: 1715 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles, CA, 8:15am-9am
Vehicle Parade/Procession 9 a.m. -10 a.m.
Contact: Jed Smith 818-636-2841
Providence Saint John’s
1:30 p.m. - Painting cars at CVS parking lot: 2505 Santa Monica Blvd Santa Monica, 90404
2 p.m. - Caravan around the hospital
Contact: Denice Martin, 818-731-1586
National Nurses United is the largest and fastest growing union of registered nurses in the U.S. with more than 150,000 members nationwide. NNU plays a leadership role in safeguarding the health and safety of RNs and their patients and has won landmark legislation in the areas of staffing, safe patient handling, infectious disease and workplace violence prevention.