Letter Sent To Mayors Over Healthcare Merger
New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell and Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia received a letter from various community organizations asking that they review the proposed merger between Southcoast Health and Care New England.
Tyrék Lee, of 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, one of the organizations that signed the letter, tells WBSM News there are many questions regarding how employees and the community will be impacted by the merger.
"What is going to look like under this new structure? Where are the jobs going to go? The consolidation of the jobs? We'd like to connect this to the ever-changing healthcare needs of our Commonwealth," said Lee "so to better understand what the actual plans are."
Lee says the signatories to the letter, which includes the New Bedford branch of the NAACP, Mass Senior Action, and the Coalition for Social Justice, wrote the letter, in part, to gauge how much involvement both mayors have in the merger process.
"It really is hard to tell what they know, or what level of involvement they have been in, or what level of involvement they're ready to be in," said Lee "our hope is that the letters will start that dialogue to really figure out what they do know, but more importantly what they're willing to do to allow a transparent process."
Lee says that the signatories are hoping that Southcoast Health and Care New England will have a series of meetings with community members so all parties involved can be better informed about the merger's potential impacts.