This week I was one of the workers at the Guardian Angels nursing home here in Elk River who went on a two-day Unfair Labor Practices strike. I wanted to share why.

I love the community we’ve created at Guardian Angels. I, along with countless families, are impressed with the genuine compassion and quality care our residents receive. We are a 5-star facility, and it is not because of our CEO, but because of our dedicated staff.

None of us want to strike. All of us would rather be at work to care for our residents. The residents are our extended family members and it pains me to know I will worry about them during our strike. But this is for them as much as it is for us.

It’s disheartening that management has spent the last weeks organizing how to handle the care of our residents while we are on strike rather than reach out and talk to the staff that have made this a 5-Star facility. This week we have been shown we are worth little more than Dum Dum suckers and cups. We are not worthy of our opinions. We care deeply about this facility and our community, which is why we are asking for safe staffing levels, a real voice in the facility, and pay and respect for longtime, dedicated staff.

Throughout history people in power have fought to keep their constituents uneducated. Why? Because knowledge is power and the people in power want to dictate their narrative and agenda. This is why Guardian Angels does not want our union to have a voice. They know that knowledge is power and that when residents, workers and community stick together, we can ensure that this facility remains a 5-star facility for all of us, not just management.

I would like to thank fellow staff, residents, family members and local businesses for their encouragement and support during this arduous time. We won’t stop fighting for quality care and good jobs for residents and staff at Guardian Angels. — Carrie Ramm, Zimmerman

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