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Sienna Senior Living Forcing COVID-19 Positive Healthcare Workers to Put Their Families At Risk

July 3, 2020 Angelica Cruz

Long-term care corporation stops accommodations for COVID-19 positive workers, despite paying shareholders over $30M in dividends this year so far.

Richmond Hill, Ontario — Midland Gardens Care Community, owned and operated by Sienna Senior Living, is ending paid accommodations for their frontline healthcare staff who test COVID-19 positive, forcing them to return to their homes and put their families at risk.

One worker, who has been provided accommodations by Sienna since May 28, tested positive for COVID-19 on June 25 and was later told that Sienna’s policy was that COVID-19 positive workers must return to their personal homes until they are able to return to work. This worker, who lives in a two-bedroom and one-bathroom apartment with her husband, two children and 80-year-old mother, is now forced to choose between paying for her own hotel accommodations or putting her family at risk of the virus. This worker has contacted Public Health and they have recommended she continues to isolate away from her family.

Statement from SEIU Healthcare President Sharleen Stewart:

“Shareholders cannot continue to come before our frontline heroes and the seniors they care for. Sienna Senior Living has already paid out over $30M in dividends to their shareholders this year, but they refuse to cover the costs necessary to keep workers and their families safe. This is just another example of why the failed experiment of for-profit long-term care delivery must come to an end.

We are calling on Sienna Senior Living to immediately change their greedy and dangerous policy and cover the cost of accommodations for all their workers, including those who have tested COVID-19 positive. Our healthcare heroes, and their families, deserve to be kept safe as they put their health and safety on the line each day of this pandemic to ensure our seniors get the care they need and deserve.”

SEIU Healthcare represents more than 60,000 healthcare and community service workers across Ontario. The union’s members work in hospitals, homecare, nursing and retirement homes, and community services throughout the province. www.seiuhealthcare.ca 

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