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Lawrence & Memorial Corporation Chooses Painful Cuts to Services and Jobs to Protect its Profit Margin

“A community hospital should not be putting its profit margin first,” said Stephanie Johnson, a sleep lab technician at L&M Hospital and president of AFT Local 5051. “I am L&M,  and I believe that our community deserves better than this kind of reckless behavior,” she said. Local 5051 represents the approximately 250 licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and technicians at L&M Hospital.
 
LMC’s strong financial status has been widely reported over the past year as the corporation sought and received approval to assume control of Westerly Hospital. At a March 13 hearing held by the Rhode Island Department of Health, LMC’s chief financial officer claimed over $200 million “sitting on the balance sheet” of the corporation.
 
“We are the caregivers and healthcare workers that have made L&M the community hospital the region has counted on for generations,” said Lisa D’Abrosca, a registered nurse (RN) and president of AFT Local 5049. “I am L&M, and I believe we should be advocates for the whole community,” she said. Approximately 539 RNs at L&M Hospital are members of Local 5049.
 
“I have an emotional investment in the people who make this hospital work,” said Harry Rodriguez, a health unit coordinator and president of AFT Local 5123. “I am L&M and I believe that a responsible employer takes care of its people and the community it benefits from,” he said. Local 5123 represents more than 800 healthcare workers in 93 different job classifications.
 
Eleven hospital workers from the three local unions were notified Tuesday that their jobs would be eliminated effective October 6, 2013. The affected workers include RNs, mammography and nuclear medicine technicians, food service workers, and secretaries.
 
“L&M Corporation should make quality patient care and vital health services a higher priority than maintaining its board of directors’ 3% profit margin,” said Melodie Peters, a licensed practical nurse, former state senator from the region, and president of AFT Connecticut. “I am L&M, and I believe that our community hospital should not be in the business of enriching a few at the expense of the many,” she said.
 
AFT Connecticut, the largest union of acute care hospital workers in the state, represents approximately 1,600 nurses, LPNs, technicians, and healthcare workers at L&M Hospital in New London. Follow the union on Facebook at www.facebook.com/aftct.
 
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