State College

Nursing home employees fight for pay

A group of people protested in front of the State College Post Office Wednesday in support of higher wages for nursing home workers.
A group of people protested in front of the State College Post Office Wednesday in support of higher wages for nursing home workers. CDT photo

Holding signs that read “Quality Jobs, not Poverty Wages” and “Fight for $15,” about 20 nursing home workers demonstrated in front of the State College post office in favor of higher wages Wednesday afternoon.

The demonstration was part of a larger national protest that calls for an increased minimum wage. In Pennsylvania, nursing home workers gathered in several cities to engage in similar protests.

Tax day was chosen because of its significance. Nursing homes are often paid for by taxpayer-funded initiatives like Medicaid and Medicare, said Greg Overturf, who works in the dietary department at Mount Nittany Medical Center.

An increased wage would not only be beneficial for workers, but also allow less turnover and better care at institutions, Overturf said.

Nursing home employees from elsewhere around the region, including Lewistown and Lock Haven, also attended.

Steffani Yeater, a certified nurse’s assistant who works in Lewistown, made the trip because a bump in wages would be a huge deal for her an her fiancee. The two live together and struggle to pay all of the bills, she said.

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