Today I present to you a guest blog, written by Denise Parent RN, a nurse at Backus Hospital for 31 years. Denise has not been a union activist, she's just a loving nurse, concerned about her patients and her hospital. Her writting comes from her heart, and frankly, I wish I had written it. Thank you Denise for sharing this with us.
I Was Prepared
As I listened with great concern at the first Town Hall meeting seemingly years ago now, regarding how much this hospital was wasting, I was prepared to do my share of conserving! Until I found out it meant hiring a multimillion dollar company who’s sole purpose was to cut costs at the expense of employees and benefits etc…..
I was prepared, being a 31 year employee, to be fiscally responsible and donate my hard earned salary in order to keep my hospital functioning, until I found out that at least 5 Executives received $25,000 bonuses the same year we were told to tighten our belts.
I was prepared to weather this storm and work “short” until the news came out that our CEO in fringe benefits ALONE made $126,000, well over the starting salary of 2 new RN’s.
I was prepared to listen to their voice of reason; until it was revealed the nurses affected the most by these cuts were shift, weekend, and holiday employees. Unfortunately not all the nurses have been impacted equally, there needs to be understanding from both groups.
I was prepared to support my administration no matter what until I saw many of my coworkers leave or get fired, the LPNs who for decades were part of a “hospital family”, who last year were told, “SEE YA!”
I can’t believe, I’m composing this on Easter Sunday, I can go on and on. Yes everyone, it is for me all about loss. Loss of respect, loss of voice, loss of being appreciated and financial loss. This financial burden should not only be felt by employees, but especially by the administrative staff and board members who should lead by example.
But what you can count on is no matter what I have lost in salary and benefits, I will continue to deliver the same excellent care for my patients that I always have. My patients deserve and need that! I will continue to fill my locker with diet hot chocolate, peanut butter, soups and crackers to give to them at 4 am since it is no longer provided by the hospital as floor stock. I will not stop being proud of having been an employee at Backus for 31 yrs.
I will not stop, because now I am prepared.