East Flatbush

Coalition to rally for jobs at SUNY Downstate on Thursday

More than 200 positions being cut

September 11, 2013 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
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Central Brooklyn residents plan to rally to save vital health care services at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in East Flatbush on Thursday.

More than 200 SUNY Downstate employees will be losing their jobs later this month as cash-strapped Downstate restructures.

The rally is being sponsored by the SUNY Downstate Coalition of Faith, Labor and Community Leaders, comprised of Brooklyn-area religious and community organizations and unions representing SUNY Downstate employees.  

The rally will begin at noon outside the 470 Clarkson Avenue entrance to Downstate’s University Hospital in Central Brooklyn. Coalition leaders, state lawmakers and members of the community will call on state elected officials to stop any further downsizing or privatization plans that would erode the health care services Downstate provides to residents of Central Brooklyn.

After suffering losses for years, Downstate’s “Sustainability Plan” calls for it to shrink and cut expenses.

About 150 Downstate employees represented by United University Professions (UUP) will be losing their jobs, along with an additional 65 employees who have been notified that their jobs are being eliminated.

The rally takes place as at least two other Brooklyn hospitals – Long Island College Hospital, operated by SUNY Downstate, and Interfaith Medical Center — face possible closure.  

Speakers will include Pastor Gilford Monrose of Mt. Zion Church of God, president of the 67th Precinct Clergy Council; Bishop Orlando Findlayter of New Hope Christian Fellowship, chairman of Churches United to Save and Heal (CUSH); Pastor Shane Vidal of the Marantha Seventh Day Adventist Church; and Rowena Blackman-Stroud, president of the United University Professions Chapter at SUNY Downstate Medical Center who also serves as UUP’s statewide treasurer.

Several state senators and Assembly members representing Brooklyn constituents are also expected to speak.  The SUNY Downstate Coalition of Faith, Labor and Community Leaders is a Brooklyn-based organization collectively fighting for health care services and jobs at SUNY Downstate.

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