By Mike LaCrosse

WORCESTER (CBS) – Nursing home employees are calling for more help to stay safe on the front lines. Joseph Kum is a nurse at a long term care facility in Worcester and is concerned about coronavirus. “Very worried because the pandemic is very serious,” said Kum.

He and some of his colleagues stood outside their workplace in the pouring rain Thursday afternoon to call for more protective gear.

“We are all trying to do the social distancing, but still we need the PPE to be able to work to protect ourselves and protect the residents,” Kum.

Staff at four nursing homes around Massachusetts joined a nationwide rally calling on the Trump Administration to provide more PPE.

The effort is being led by the Service Employees International Union. In Massachusetts, it represents roughly 5,000 workers at long term facilities.

Nursing home employees rally for more protection against coronavirus (WBZ-TV)

“Housekeepers are in there cleaning the rooms, the cooks are making food for the residents and all of them are showing up everyday to try and do their part,” said 1199SEIU Executive Vice President Tim Foley.

Nursing home employees are also hoping the community will help by donating protective gear. The Massachusetts Senior Care Association set up a section on its website to help streamline PPE donations.

“We need to protect our workers in order to protect and provide quality care to our residents,” said Tara Gregorio, President of Mass Senior Care Association.

CLICK HERE for more information about donating protective gear.

Mike LaCrosse


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