Union City, NJ- Progressive Filipino youth group in Jersey city, joins health care workers rally for better wages and benefits at Castle Hill Nursing Home last July 8, 2009.
While carrying banners and placards, members of Filipino youth group Anakbayan and the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON) gave solidarity messages to protesting workers by joining their picket last Wednesday in front of a nursing home, wherein a significant number of workers are Filipinos.
“As sons and daughters of immigrant and health care workers ourselves, we know how it feels to see our parents work hard and still not earn enough. We express our support to the workers in Castle Hill nursing home and to all the workers who are suffering the same fate.” Said Yves Nibungco, Deputy Secretary-General of Anakbayan New York/New Jersey.
Castle Hill is one out of four facilities under Omni Nursing Homes. Workers have been without a contract since 2007 and are paid less than $8/hour.
“These workers here in Castle Hill provide care for their patients, but who takes care of them? With their current wage and lack of benefits, it is clear that their employer doesn’t care about them,” said Kathleen Dy, a member of Anakbayan New York/New Jersey.
Rico Foz, Executive Vice-President of the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON) said “an injury to one is an injury to all. The management should heed the demand of the workers! Or else, face the wrath of the people!"
In light of the global financial crisis, these enterprises increase their exploitation of immigrant workers. Immigrant workers take the full blow of the crisis as employers depress the workers’ wage and deprive them of benefits crucial to their well-being to drive up the company’s profit. This kind of abuse from management affects the quality of care provided by the nursing home workers and, in the end, harms the patients too.
Kathleen Dy said, “Only through our collective action, particularly with the workers, can we effectively oppose the financial crisis’ attacks on our basic rights and dignity.”
“We recognize the fact that the struggle of these Castle Hill workers is partly our struggle as Filipino immigrant youth as well. That's why we ccame here today to show our full solidarity to the Omni workers struggling for justice! Anakbayan New York/ New Jersey is with these workers up to the end until they attain victory, in Castle Hill, and everywhere in the world,” Nibungco ended.###
Anakbayan New York-New Jersey
Anakbayan (in english: "children of the people") is a comprehensive Filipino youth organization that aims to build unity among all sectors of Filipino youth-- immigrant, US-born/raised, student, working, LGBT, women, artists, etc-- for the promotion of cultural awareness and the advancement of rights, welfare, and social justice. All Filipino youth are agents of social change, so we strongly encourage all Filipino youth to join Anakbayan and start serving the people! Contact us at email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org