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Riverside Parkview Community Hospital Avoids Employee Walkout

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Parkview Community Hospital
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An exterior photo of the Parkview Community Hospital in Riverside, Ca.

A planned walkout at Riverside Parkview Community Hospital has been avoided after a tentative agreement was made between union members and the hospital.

The walkout would have involved more than 300 unionized healthcare workers, who were raising concerns over issues such as staffing and low wages.

John Richardson is a Pathology Assistant and has worked at Parkview for six years. "We are there for the patients every day, whether good, bad, indifferent, we're putting our lives on the line every time we walk through that door," said Richardson.

Richardson spoke to me on Tuesday before the agreement was made and spoke about how many employees don't make enough from their Parkview job to make by financially. " A lot of our members are working two and three jobs just so they can afford to live. But they don't want to leave Parkview because that's their family."

Parkview has been under new management after being bought by Alhambra-based AHMC Healthcare in 2019. The hospital is officially called the Doctors Hospital of Riverside but maintains Parkview branding on its website and facilities.

Tom Parker is a Communications Specialist with the SEIU UHW union. "One of the main issues, (was) just a lack of investment in the workforce and you had workers who have been their 10 to 15 years, who are making minimum wage or close to it," said Parker.

Parker says in many cases for the hospital, some employees would work at Parkview for three to six months for experience and then move on to a better-paying facility. "The new agreement really addresses that and comes us with a weight scale that we feel is a lot more in line with other hospitals in the region and is going to go a long way towards making sure Doctors Hospital of Riverside can really attract and retain the best quality caregivers."

In a written statement from the hospital, they said quality of care and patient safety is their highest priority and that they didn't believe the union's actions were warranted or helpful.

Jonathan Linden is a reporter at 91.9 KVCR in San Bernardino, California. He joined KVCR in July 2021 and had previously interned for the station in the Spring of 2019. Outside of KVCR, Jonathan also interned for KALW in San Francisco, KFI in Burbank, and Radio HCJB in Quito, Ecuador.