A rally was held Thursday on the front lawn of the Emerald South nursing and rehabilitation center on Delaware Avenue. The message: change is needed.
Residents and employees of Emerald South gathered to let their voices be heard and make the NYS Department of Health take notice. The past two years have seen two deaths at the facility. The most recent, less than a month ago.
"When someone comes to a nursing home they should be provided care, they shouldn't be falling out of windows, they shouldn't be beaten to death,” Todd Hobler said, Vice President of 1199SEIU.
Those that live and work in the nursing home claim that there is a food shortage, broken washing machines, a lack of supplies, bounced checks and even life insurance fraud. One woman says her job creates both financial and relationship stress with her children.
"Countless times they’ve had to wait when I go into a shift here because there’s no guarantee when I’ll be home," Kyonia Saffron, a licensed practical nurse at Emerald South for the past nine years. "They end up having to be home and raise themselves at that point.”
Emerald South is labeled as a focus facility by the government, meaning that their low performance puts the facility at risk for losing Medicaid funding.
We reached out to Emerald South Thursday for comment but they declined our phone call. In a previous statement earlier this month, Emerald South said "It strives to offer a supportive, caring and safe environment for all residents."