Workers at Guardian Angels to hold two-day ULP strike June 6th & 7th
ELK RIVER— Nursing home workers employed by Guardian Angels in Elk River filed their official 10-day notice ahead of Memorial Day weekend and have announced dates for a two-day Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) strike on Thursday, June 6th and Friday, June 7th. The group of over 100 workers, who do housekeeping, laundry, dietary, health unit coordinating, nursing assistance, recreation and maintenance, are members of SEIU Healthcare Minnesota.
The group voted overwhelmingly to authorize a strike earlier this month after their employer spent months refusing to make an offer that respects their dedicated workforce. The two sides have held over 10 bargaining sessions, with their employer unwilling to meet the group’s demands for safe staffing levels, respect for workers who want a collective voice in their workplace, and investment in dedicated staff so they can continue to make Guardian Angels a Five Star facility.
Nicole Mellum, who has worked Guardian Angels for nearly 14 years as a nursing assistant and TMA, highlighted why the group will be taking this step next week to stand up for what is right for patients, staff and the whole Elk River community.
“I voted to go on strike, and will be out on the picket line next Thursday, because as a longtime employee I see how critical it is we stand up for our residents, ourselves and our whole community. I’ve worked at Guardian Angels for 14 years and am proud of the work my co-workers and I have done to make this a Five Star facility for our residents. But we are tired of our work not being respected and our experience being pushed aside. We want this facility to not just be a Five Star facility now, but in the future. But with the way longtime staff are being treated, and the way management seems unwilling to negotiate a fair contract with us, we are worried about that being the case. What we are asking for — safe staffing levels, pay & benefits that respect our tenure, respect for our ability to work with our union — are things that would help residents and staff. It is frustrating management continue to refuse to meet in the middle on what is best for our whole community. We care deeply about our residents, which is why we are willing to go on strike next week to fight for their future and ours.”
Pickets will take place on the public sidewalk outside of the facility both days and the community are invited to join.
SEIU Healthcare Minnesota represents healthcare and long term care workers in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and home care across Minnesota.