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CONTACT: Denyce Duncan Lacy or
Don Feldstein (518) 640-6600
Lacy’s cell number is (518) 265-3114

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 16, 2012

UUP members protest layoffs at SUNY Downstate Medical


BROOKLYN
Hundreds of workers at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn demonstrated outside the hospital today, protesting a restructuring plan that would lead to hundreds of layoffs and the loss of vital health care services. The workers, members of United University Professions, Local 2190 of AFL-CIO, conducted their informational picketing during a meeting at the hospital to discuss the fate of Downstate. Downstate officials, SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher, SUNY Board of Trustees Chairman H. Carl McCall, and state lawmakers representing Brooklyn residents attended the meeting.

“This restructuring plan threatens vital health care services for thousands of residents in Brooklyn,” said UUP Downstate Chapter President Rowena Blackman-Stroud. “It is unconscionable to cut staff and cut hospital services when Central Brooklyn residents desperately need Downstate’s medical services.”

Blackman-Stroud also said the loss of as many as 1,000 jobs at Downstate would stagger the neighborhood’s economy.

“These job losses will devastate Brooklyn’s already weak economy. More families will lose their homes to foreclosure, more small businesses will shut down and the borough’s already high unemployment rates will skyrocket.

“Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said job creation was one of his highest priorities. I don’t understand how the state can take action to reduce employment in this economically distressed area—we need more jobs, not fewer jobs in Brooklyn,” Blackman-Stroud said.

Downstate is a major academic medical center for health education, research, and patient care—and is the only public teaching hospital in Brooklyn. It serves Brooklyn’s 2.5 million residents, as well as patients from Staten Island and Queens.

UUP represents 35,000 academic and professional faculty on 29 New York state-operated campuses, including SUNY’s public teaching hospitals and health science centers in Brooklyn, Long Island and Syracuse. It is an affiliate of NYSUT, the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association, and the AFL-CIO.

UUP represents 35,000 academic and professional faculty on 29 New York state-operated campuses, including SUNY’s public teaching hospitals and health science centers in Brooklyn, Long Island and Syracuse. It is an affiliate of NYSUT, the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association, and the AFL-CIO.

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