STATE SUES HOSPITAL CHAIN OVER UNPAID WAGES

By Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN North America News Bureau

May 17, 2013

BELLFLOWER, California – Imagine coming into work and not getting paid. That’s what Filipinos at several Southern California hospitals say has been going on.

For the past year, hospital workers at the Bellflower Medical Center have described their pay days as uncertain and frustrating as the hospital has delayed their salaries and have paid them with checks that have bounced.

“Since January 11, every payday, most of the paychecks of the employees are bouncing. I do actually have an outstanding check, my pay check from March 8th, which bounced on March 14, which bounced again on the 19th. After that they don’t want to release the replacements,” said Bellflower worker, Femina Reyes David.

“HR doesn’t know anything. Nobody’s giving us any answers so everybody is upset,” said another worker, Anna Garcia.

The problems started last year after the hospital chain had paid a $16.5 million settlement with the federal government after its involvement in an alleged Medicare scheme where they were charging the government for performing bogus procedures on homeless people.

The department of labor relations has fined them over $7 million for late wages and bounced checks to their employees.

The California Labor Commission has filed a $100 million lawsuit saying the hospital chain failed to legally notify employees of layoffs.

Despite the uncertainty, employees continued to work until patients were eventually relocated.
Later on they were all told to stop coming in for work.

“Unfortunately, there’s no letter that was distributed or received regarding any layoffs. So technically, we’re still employees but working as under time. But we cannot even get our paychecks,” David added.

Some of the workers have considered hiring their own lawyers as they try to make ends meet.
“It’s hard just having to use some of our savings,” said Garcia.

“Some of us have two jobs. We have 2, 3 jobs because we need it, because one job is not enough. So they cannot deprive us of the right to get what we deserve,” David added.

Pacific Health has turned down requests for interviews regarding the salary issues or the lawsuit, but it filed a letter to the Los Angeles County Health Department last month, saying that it is in financial distress and over a million dollars behind in salary payments.

You can reach Steve Angeles at steve_angeles@abs-cbn.com

8 Comments on this post.

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  • Val Vaqua
    17 May 2013 at 7:13 pm - Reply

    Taiwan with 20.3 million population, babatuk-batukan ang Phillipines with 101Million people! Send Indio, Lito Lapid, ERAP, ..mga politician with big balls! Bwaaaahahahahahahahah mga “UNGAS”! Can you name any country that don’t kick filipino around………..aaaahhhhhhhhh! Awanin manong!

  • Delia
    18 May 2013 at 9:15 am - Reply

    This will not surprise me anymore than anyone , California is deeply bankcrapt due to the fact that all hospitals in california is been used and abuse by illegals and not paying a dimes . How does anyone expect to get paid when hospitals themself not getting paid by the user’s and abusers.

    Come on people get a grip and use your senses for a change. You people allows this to happen , not the hospitals fualt , and you have a nerve to sue ? Is’nt it why so many Hospital closing in California ? because they are unpaid for their service too ?

  • kikayPang0
    20 May 2013 at 6:47 am - Reply

    Do they deserved to get paid ?

    • Delia
      20 May 2013 at 11:44 am - Reply

      KikayPang0 , ask the illegals if they deserved to get treated free of charge . Hospitals ,Workers and employess depends only when they collect fees for their service, which is zero .

  • buloknaisda
    21 May 2013 at 12:33 pm - Reply

    Pa engles engles pa mali naman, bankcrap s%%%7 na raw ang calipornia !

    • Delia
      22 May 2013 at 3:04 pm - Reply

      Hey before you criticized anybody for spelling , you need to check yourself first … ha ha ha
      yeah right ( calipornia ) your caught red handed … Bustedddddd

      buloknaisda

      May 21, 2013 at 12:33 pm

      Pa engles engles pa mali naman, bankcrap s%%%7 na raw ang calipornia !

      • buloknaisda
        23 May 2013 at 10:14 am - Reply

        eh di lumabas ang tunay. kunyari ka pang hindi ka pinoy delia ! Ulol !

    • buloknaisda
      24 May 2013 at 7:31 am - Reply

      Pinoy lang ang mag sspell ng bankrupt to bancrapt ! hindi daw pinoy,,,, lokohin mo lelang mong panot !

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