About 1,000 hospital employees and residents are expected to congregate at a Newark church this morning to protest the impending closing of Saint James Hospital.
The protest begins at 10 a.m. at Saint James Roman Catholic Church on Madison Street and will be followed by a march to the steps of the hospital.
This is the second rally since Cathedral Healthcare System approved an agreement earlier this month to close Saint James, located in Newark’s Ironbound section, and Columbus Hospital, in the city’s North Ward. Both hospitals are slated to close later this year.
Yesterday, we received this comment on the blog from one of the organizers describing the event:
KEEP ST JAMES OPEN:
The hospital has announced March 15th as their closing date. The selling process is not complete, there must be a certificate of need and a list of other permits. However, employees have already been handed their pink slips and only 14 nursing jobs will be transferable. 500 jobs in general will be lost and the Ironbound will lost their emergency room and several more local medical services. Last year alone the hospital has 20,000 visits.
The buyers/sellers will get away with this illegal selling process because the law has no teeth; no one goes to jail, no one pays a fine, no one feels any repercussion.That is, no one except community members. Even your wallet will feel an impact because the state has promised your tax dollars to bailout Catheral, the current management, with a double-digit, multi-million dollar deal and community members will not receive one benefit from this!
ALL HOPE IS NOT LOST!
Community members are organizing support, clergy has met along with community stakeholders, local politicians have been contacted. We must press politicians to do something!
SATURDAY, JANUARY 19th, 10:00am ST JAMES HOSPITAL
WE NEED COMMUNITY PRESENCE TO PRESS THE LOCAL AND STATE POLITICIANS TO KEEP ST JAMES HOSPITAL OPEN!!!