At 6 a.m. Tuesday morning hundreds of staff members at nursing homes in Connecticut walked off the job.
"We're out on strike because they are breaking the law by imposing cuts in hours, benefits and pension benefits," said the Union Vice President Bill Myerson.
In all 700 employees will hit the picket line, among them are nurses, nursing assistants, the dietary chef, housekeepers and other staff. They're protesting labor concessions they say are being imposed on them by HealthBridge/Care One.
"They've taken away vacation, sick time, pension plans, increased insurance plans families can't afford it," said dietary aid Eva Fal.
In all five nursing homes across the state are are affected; Danbury Health Care Center, Long Ridge in Stamford, West River Health Care Center in Milford, Westport Health Care Center and Newington Health Care Center.
HealthBridge/Care One called in outside help to fill the voids.
HealthBridge says they will continue to provide excellent care for their patients throughout the strike, but these employees worry about the patients they're used to seeing daily.
"They are suffering, they love us, we love them, they were crying when we left yesterday," said nursing assistant Antoinette Cothran.
But these workers vow they'll stay as long as they have to.
"We are just fighting for what is right," said Susan Simmone.
"Our priority, as always, is to provide excellent care for our residents, and we are fully prepared to care for them should the union demand that its members leave our residents' bedsides," HealthBridge said in a statement.
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