We want to let you know what we know about the recent layoffs at UMass Memorial Hospital.
All together, just under 40 SHARE members have been given notice that they will be laid off, or have their hours cut significantly. Each SHARE member will have a SHARE Rep to work with, starting on the day of their notice, and continuing as long as they need help. The Reps are there for support, to make sure everyone knows what benefits and options they have, and to help people figure out what they want to do next. This is some of the most important work that our union does, and we are grateful to have such caring reps working so supportively.
As you have probably heard, the hospital recently announced that they would close West 2, an inpatient nursing floor on the Memorial campus. There are 21 SHARE members on that floor, and an even larger number of Registered Nurses, Per-Diems, and other employees. SHARE Reps met with our members to help them understand what will happen now, what their rights are, and to try to process this devastating news.
Walter Ettinger wrote a letter to the community on Friday explaining the hospital's need to constantly reassess staffing levels and expenses. Among other things, he said: "We know additional areas of our work will be impacted as will other members of our workforce. However, it is important to note that at this time we do not have plans to close any other inpatient unit at the Medical Center."
Other Layoffs Last Week
Last week there were more layoffs, spread out over different departments on different campuses. Again, SHARE Reps were with the affected members when they heard the news, and will stick with them in the weeks ahead.
Postcards about layoff "swaps" were mailed to all SHARE members last week. We will post more information about that on this blog. We will also provide answers to some common questions about layoffs, and continue providing updates here.