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Orchard Manor workers say management delaying union

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 June 2014 at 12:00 am

MEDINA – Nine months after employees approved unionization at Orchard Manor, the union has yet to be recognized and workers say the 160-bed facility continues to be short-staffed without needed investments in equipment.

Orchard Manor management has filed challenges with the National Labor Relations Board, contesting the union’s election.

The NLRB thus far has sided with employees with Orchard Manor’s challenges. The site’s owner, OMOP LLC from New York City, was ordered to give back pay after one worker was suspended and OMOP was required to give back pay and reinstate the jobs for two employees who were terminated during the push to unionize last year.

Two current employees say the latest NLRB challenges are a “stall tactic.”

Employees want a union so it has bargaining power to push for updated equipment, and adequate staff and supplies for resident care, said Chris Penna, a licensed practical nurse.

She said OMOP “is trying to bust our union.” She wants the company to withdraw its NLRB objections so the union will be certified and given a say in the 160-bed nursing home’s operation.

“We want to work as a team with management,” Penna said. “We want to work with them for the residents.”

Orchard Manor administrator Dave Denny did not respond to a phone call seeking a comment.

OMOP purchased Orchard Manor from Medina Memorial Hospital last year. The new owner plans renovations and a marketing push for the site on Bates Road, Penna said.

She would like to see OMOP also invest in its 110 employees, as well as needed equipment and supplies.

“Our main goal is we want resident care to be first,” said Pam Frasier, a certified nursing assistant. “These residents are like our family. They deserve to have a full staff there.”

The two employees said the workforce has been trimmed under the new owner.

“We want to attract good employees, and a fair contract would attract good employees,” Frasier said.