Issued September 01, 2023
WASHINGTON — SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry released the following statement regarding the release of the CMS Proposed Rule on Nursing Home Staffing:
President Biden’s 2022 announcement of a plan for bold reform of the nursing home industry gave hope to nursing home workers all across the country. And today, the Biden Administration has taken an historic first step toward realizing that promise by issuing an unprecedented proposed rule on nursing home staffing.
The new proposed staffing rule is a testament to the relentless advocacy of the majority woman-of-color-powered nursing home workforce. With this proposal, the Biden Administration sends a powerful message: All nursing homes must be held accountable to minimum staffing standards that will keep residents and workers safe, and ensure that public funding is spent in ways that allow caregivers to deliver the best care possible.
Our country's long term care system is in the midst of a catastrophic crisis, and nursing home workers and residents have suffered unspeakable consequences. In the absence of a federal staffing standard, nursing home workers have endured complete physical, mental and emotional exhaustion due to understaffed shifts and unsafe working conditions, and nursing home residents have been robbed of the quality care and quality of life they deserve.
Nursing home workers have claimed this moment to speak the truth: The days of irresponsible nursing home owners jeopardizing the health and safety of nursing home workers and residents must end now.
The members of SEIU will continue to advocate to ensure that the proposed rule announced today is strengthened, finalized, and implemented with rigor so that nursing home workers and residents are safe and residents receive the care they deserve, every day, regardless of where they live and work.