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Los Angeles nurses to join 139 nationwide ‘May Day’ actions demanding COVID-19 protections for nurses, health care workers

STAFF REPORT

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:

LOS ANGELES

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

 

Methodist Hospital

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

 

SANTA MONICA

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

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