“I am so happy”.
Edith Fillon, RN felt the love as over 200 people attended her vigil that was designed to send a message to Kaiser Permanente that the public not only believes what they are doing is wrong, but that they are disgusted by it.
Nurses, community advocates, healthcare professionals, and business leaders came from as far away as Modesto and Sacramento to support a woman they know and personally worked with or simply to show support as community members.
Iconic nurse advocate (and Edith’s good personal friend) Amy Glass both opened and closed the event by praising Edith and her husband Frank Gayaldo, while at the same time emphasizing how unnecessary this would have been if Kaiser would just behave responsibly.
Frank Gayaldo gave a passionate speech about why Kaiser’s policy (that 209 Times has brought to the public’s attention, even as Kaiser oddly denies it exists) that incentivizes executives to control employee sick leave is what he described as “evil”. HE detailed their family’s battle as they’ve had to deal with it for the past several months.
Edith made the crowd laugh when she said into the microphone “I’m shy”, but still raised a fist in a show of strength in unity.
Community activist Motecuzoma Sanchez told the crowd Edith’s situation begs the question “if Kaiser will do this to their own loyal employees, how would they treat us?” He also urged Kaiser to “do the right thing”.
Amy, who called out from the crowd, gave a surprise speech about how Edith personally saved her mother’s life when nobody else was listening and credited her with the response why her children have a grandma today.
Frank Gayaldo confirmed this morning that Central Valley Kaiser Human Resources Executive Janis Picket-Lacy continues to say Edith’s grievances are a “membership services” issue, while Membership Services Director April Richards says “these are HR issues”.
So the fight continues.