Who We Are
We are frontline caregivers at Peacehealth, united by the values we share: a commitment to our patients, a desire for a voice at work, and a responsibility to provide for our families.
- We are frontline care providers at Sacred Heart Medical Center – Riverbend and University District. We are Certified Nursing Assistants, Emergency Room Techs, Monitor Techs, Housekeepers, Food Service Assistants, Patient Access Representatives, Surgical Support Aides and more.
- We perform direct patient care and other vital services, from sterilizing equipment to preparing patients’ food to cleaning the rooms they heal in.
- We are organizing our union with the members of SEIU Local 49, which includes 10,000 people across Oregon and Washington, part of the largest healthcare union in the country.
- Read our letter to Peacehealth management.
“I’m organizing the union because we have strength in numbers. But this isn’t about me, I’ve been here for 36 years and I’m retiring in a year and half. For so long, we’ve been expected to do more and more with less and less. I’m doing this for my coworkers, the next generation who are making careers at this hospital. But most of all, I’m doing this for our patients.”
Chris Tonry, Admitting
“In just the 5 years I’ve been here, things have really changed. Almost every area in our hospital has had higher and higher patient ratios. I see how hard that is. I’m organizing the union with my coworkers because if I don’t, those changes will eventually come to my department too. We need a voice, together, to make this the best hospital it can be!”
Amanda Harp, Mental Health Tech
“I love taking care of my patients, but this job is so much harder than it was. 10 years ago, we had 6 patients a piece. Now, it’s 9 to 12. I’ve had shifts with 18. Any more you’re happy to get people to brush their teeth, let alone get them a shower. I just miss the feeling of loving my job, and not being stressed every day. I’m coming together with my coworkers because I believe its the only way we can get things back the way they ought to be.”
Anna Blackman, CNA
8th Floor Medical
“When I applied for this position, the job description described a wage scale that went from about $14/hour to about $23/hour. Now my manager tells me there is no wage scale. As a union, we’d have strength in numbers, and those kinds of arbitrary changes wouldn’t be possible. I’m not just organizing our union for me, but as a legacy for younger employees. So people in this community can get a job here, raise a family, and have some security for their future.”
Darrin Stewart, ED Tech
“I started organizing with my coworkers for many reasons. One of the biggest is the number of coworkers I’ve seen come to our hospital as a patient. Upon discharge, they may be medically on the mend, but financial stresses from healthcare debt leave them with a broken spirit. Many of us are a hospital trip away from financial chaos. We need more affordable healthcare now.”
John Anderson, Monitor Tech
“My hope is to build a safer environment for our patients and staff. With proper staffing we would have less injuries.”
Debbie Decker, EVS
“I’ve been here 9 years, and I’d like to retire from Peacehealth one day. I’m coming together with my coworkers for an equal voice. Not for a short term fix, but for the long term. I think having that voice, for fairness, staffing, wages and healthcare, will mean a lot for my family’s future. “
Shannon McGinnis, Central Services
“I think its just common sense to organize ourselves. My team is 6 people short right now, because people are leaving for other, better opportunities. If I hadn’t been volunteered to come in yesterday, there would have been only one emergency tech working a 45 room ER. As a union, like the nurses, we’ll have a voice to stand up for better staffing, more respect, and affordable healthcare – things that will ensure we are providing the best care and retaining the best caregivers.”
Matt McCarl, ED Tech
“I’ve been a CNA on our Ortho unit for over 3 years and in my time here I’ve seen cuts take a toll on our ability to provide patients the care they deserve and pay for. If I am responsible for 16 patients I cannot provide each of them the attention I know they need — 30 minutes is not enough time to really care for someone. I know Sacred Heart could do better by our community, and that’s why I am ready to stand with my coworkers and advocate for safer staffing.”
Traci Payne, CNA