Hundreds Of Union Workers Continue To Protest Outside Of ARH

By: Jon Sonnheim Email
By: Jon Sonnheim Email

Hundreds of union workers continue to protest outside of Appalachian Regional Healthcare hospitals and clinics across Kentucky and West Virginia.

They say they're still waiting for ARH officials to offer them a fair contract.

After talking with both union workers and leaders as well as ARH officials, it appears that both sides are hoping to end this strike fairly soon.

Just exactly how soon the dispute could be settled is still to be determined as day three of the strike began trickling down into many of the communities as well.

The car horns show support for striking union workers lined up outside ARH hospitals.

Just as inside the Perry County Fiscal Court, magistrates showed their support by passing a resolution backing the United Steel Workers, although it has no legal consequence.

For waiter Jimmy Allen Lewis, there was no financial support at his job.

He's starting to notice local restaurants and businesses feeling the effects of the strike.

“We've been a lot slower. Of course, the hospital people aren't making their money, they're not going to want to spend their money here,” Lewis said.

That may be good news for many in the community, as ARH officials appeared on camera for the first time since the strike began midnight Saturday.

They say everyone from top to bottom is pitching in to make sure patient care is as good as its ever been.

ARH officials say recent cuts in Medicaid and Medicare have forced them to look for ways to save money and continue operating and that's basically where some of these disagreements have come out of.

Meanwhile, those ARH officials will meet with union officials in Lexington Wednesday, in hopes of negotiating a deal.

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