Press Release

USC Verdugo Hills nurses to hold informational picket and car caravan to demand safe patient staffing

Four nurses holding signs in hospital hallway: "Patients First in the hospital" and "Save lives, safe staffng now"


Registered nurses at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital in Glendale, Calif. will hold a socially distanced informational picket and car caravan on Wednesday, Feb. 23 to protest the hospital administration’s refusal to address RNs’ ongoing patient safety concerns and to demand safe patient staffing, announced the California Nurses Association/National Nurses United (CNA/NNU). Nurses say the hospital’s failure to address the persistent short staffing throughout the hospital makes it difficult to recruit and retain experienced nurses.

“Over the past three years, we have seen the RN turnover rate hit over 40 percent,” said Suzanne Miller, a registered nurse in the intensive care unit. “We know that every time a nurse leaves our hospital, they take with them expertise, experience, and an understanding of our hospital that benefits our patients.”

  • Who: Registered nurses at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital
  • What: Informational Picket and Car Caravan
  • When: Wednesday, Feb. 23, 11a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Where: USC Verdugo Hills Hospital, 1812 Verdugo Blvd, Glendale, Calif.

USC Verdugo Hills nurses are demanding that the hospital guarantees that RNs are supplied with appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) when caring for suspected or confirmed Covid-19 patients. Furthermore, the nurses are demanding that the hospital isolate suspected and confirmed Covid patients to prevent exposure to both health care workers and other patients.

In addition, nurses are being told they must work in units without the appropriate training.

“Each day, we see administration calling on nurses to float into units outside our scope of practice,” said Natalie Bonila, a neonatal intensive care unit nurse. “This is not safe for the patients and leads to nurses leaving our hospital.”

“Nurses cared for the patients in this community throughout the worst pandemic in a century,” said Lisa Ryken, a same day surgery RN. “USC Verdugo Hills Hospital administrators here called us heroes and said that they cared for us like family, but their treatment of nurses did not reflect that. Instead, we have been asked to work overtime, extra hours, work without time off to rest and recuperate.”

“This pandemic has made us all more aware of the lack of respect shown for our profession,” said Lisa Harris, an emergency department RN, “Management cares more about profits than their patients and staff. We went from heroes to zeroes. Their lack of respect has resulted in high turnover, jeopardizing patient care.”

CNA represents nearly 300 nurses at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital.

The California Nurses Association/National Nurses United is the largest and fastest growing union and professional association of registered nurses in the nation with 100,000 members in more than 200 facilities throughout California and more than 175,000 RNs nationwide.