Nursing Home Workers at 11 Chicagoland Facilities Deliver 10-Day Unfair Labor Practice Strike Notice, Raise Alarm on Resident Care, Worker Safety

23.08.24 SEIU HCII Infinity Strike Notice Presser 02 Low Res Yolanda

With a nearly 80% turnover rate, Infinity Nursing Homes is on a federal watchlist reserved for the worst nursing homes in the country

CHICAGO – Frontline nursing home workers at Infinity Nursing Homes – a group of 11 Chicagoland nursing homes owned and operated by Moishe Gubin and Michael Blisko — delivered a 10-day unfair labor practice strike notice Thursday afternoon after Infinity failed to address the worsening crisis of short staffing fueled by poverty-level wages. Flanked by signs blaring “Low Wages = 80% Turnover,” workers explained that while they remain hopeful they can reach a fair agreement at the bargaining table, they have been left with no choice but to announce their intent to strike in order to protect residents and workers alike. 

Workers are set to go on strike as early as September 4 unless management settles a fair contract. A video of the press conference is available here. Photos are available here.

“I need a living wage, and the residents need proper care. I work short staffed every single day and our residents deserve more. We’re all going to get old someday and we’re all going to need care. Our residents should receive the type of care we’d all like someday,” said Shantonia Jackson, a certified nursing assistant at City View Multicare Center.“We are being asked to do two or three jobs at one time but we’re only paid for one. There’s no way we can provide the quality care we want to provide. And in addition to being exhausted and overworked, we are worried about the impact on our residents.”

Workers bravely went on strike in 2020 when Infinity’s chronic short staffing and failure to protect workers from COVID put both residents and workers at risk, with the nursing home chain having one of the highest COVID death rates in the state. Despite winning significant provisions related to safety in that strike, Infinity continues to short staff—paying poverty level wages that fail to attract new workers and that give dedicated workers little reason to stay.  

“The conditions in the building are deplorable. We are working in extreme heat. Just yesterday I almost had a heat stroke because I was trying to help the residents with air and trying to get them fans. We need help. We need Infinity to pay the people so we can draw in new workers because I’m not Superman,” said Aaron Wright, a maintenance tech worker at City View Multicare Center. 

Infinity owners and their investors are reaping exorbitant profits while paying unlivable wages, including actually paying many workers minimum wage. The result is a nearly 80% turnover rate and short staffing that risks the health and well-being of both residents and workers 

“After many months of bargaining and trying to convince Infinity owners to do the right thing, workers have been left with no choice but to give 10 days’ unfair labor practice strike notice today because lives are on the line. While owners and their investors reap exorbitant profits, Infinity’s staff turnover rate is 79%–risking the health and well-being of both residents and workers,” said Shaba Andrich, Vice President of Nursing Homes. It’s our sincere hope that Infinity owners are listening and will choose to prevent this strike by doing the right thing: settling a fair contract that pays the living wages needed to address the crisis of short staffing.” 

“We are here because this isn’t fair for the workers and it isn’t fair for the residents. They can’t receive the proper care they need because we’re getting paid minimum wage….Workers have lost their homes. Workers have lost their cars. Bills are behind. The price of living is going up all over Illinois and we cannot survive,” said Darryl McNeely, a housekeeper at Oak Lawn Respiratory and Rehabilitation Center. 

Unless management returns to the table to settle a fair contract within the next ten days, frontline workers at the following Chicagoland nursing homes (collectively, “Infinity Nursing Homes”) will go on strike:

  • City View Multicare Center (Cicero)
  • Niles Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Niles)
  • Lakeview Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Chicago)
  • Ambassador Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Chicago)
  • Continental Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Chicago)
  • Oak Lawn Respiratory and Rehabilitation Center (Oak Lawn)
  • Southpoint Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Chicago)
  • West Suburban Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Bloomingdale)
  • Forest View Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing (Itasca)
  • Momence Meadows Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center (Momence)
  • Parker Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (Streator)

Infinity owners and their investors are reaping exorbitant profits while paying unlivable wages—resulting in a nearly 80% turnover rate and short staffing that risks the health and well-being of both residents and workers. 

The staffing levels at Infinity nursing homes fall critically below state-mandated minimum care hours per day. In just one fiscal quarter, Infinity nursing homes fell short by a staggering 84,421 care hours. As a result, Infinity Nursing Homes have come under intense regulatory scrutiny, earning a place on a federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) watch list of less than 90 nursing homes nationwide with significant quality of care deficiencies. 

*SEIU Healthcare Illinois members and frontline nursing home workers will be available for media interviews during the event*