Responsibility falls on board

People from this community, support your Brooks Hospital union workers. Chris Lanski, open your eyes to reality – the Director of Nursing and the CEO do not care what happens to this hospital or its staff. They do not even have a vested interest in this community. Why should they when they have job security with Hamot Hospital.

Why did Chris Lanski and the hospital Board of Trustees allow this to happen? Yes, they allowed this to happen.

The former CEO, Jonathan Lawrence, spent the hospital’s money like it was growing on the beautiful tree in front of the hospital. The hospital had managers for fiscal and community relations for 20 plus years, but that wasn’t good enough. He had to hire “executive” management to run those departments.

How much money in salary and benefits did this cost, and still is costing the hospital? He also hired two “assistant” CEOs, one for Lake Shore Hospital and one for Brooks Hospital; why? If that wasn’t enough wasteful spending, which the Board of Trustees found nothing wrong with, Mr. Lawrence had to rent an office space in Fredonia where he could work. What was wrong with the office he had? Upon his departure, Brooks Hospital had to continue paying the rent for the office until the lease expired.

Exit Mr. Lawrence and enter UPMC Hamot. When Mr. Lawrence left, all of his top management should have left with him. How much money would Brooks Hospital be saving then? With Hamot on board, Brooks has to be saving some money. Not because they let go of the “top heavy” management level, but because they are dismissing all of the caregivers and workers. The staff literally does not know if they will have a job every time they go to work. They don’t know if that will be the day they will be told they are no longer needed, given some lame reason why, and escorted out of the building. Would you want to go to work every day feeling like that?

I am a former Brooks Memorial Hospital employee. Not because I was let go, because six years ago I chose a different field in nursing. I was in management, but I worked side by side with my fellow nurses. We worked together for the good of our patients and the hospital; we laughed together and sometimes we cried together.

What I see now is no laughing matter. Brooks has fired too many good, extremely competent nurses and other staff members. Why? Is it because they have been there a long time and make too much money? Is that one of their money saving tactics?

Mr. Lanski, Brooks CEO, and Board of Trustees, don’t tell the community how broke the hospital is until you get rid of the layer of management that was brought in by Mr. Lawrence and remember, you only have yourselves to blame. You had to approve of all of this spending, or weren’t you doing your job?

Don’t take your mistakes out on the ones who do the work.

Susan Lis is an RN, BSN and Dunkirk resident.