Front Line Heroes Profile- Russell

Here’s one of your SEIU-West Front Line Heroes.   

Providing hands on care during a pandemic is not easy but Russell is offering some advice from his Kitchen headquarters.

I work as a cook in an LTC facility. Every day seems to be like walking into a new job because we don’t know what we are walking into and a lot of us frontline staff feel the same way. We are looking to our managers for direction. Many of my coworkers have worked here a long time so they know their jobs but there’s a lot of pressure and stress with COVID-19.

Everyone is scared for their own safety to start with. Workers are already coming into work with anxiety. Many of my coworkers are scared to bring it home to loved ones.  

Sometimes we just have to talk about it and when we do, I see that people are ready to cry. Everyone seems to have an understanding that this is bigger than our unit, our region. We are just trying to do the best we can. 

For the most part, everyone is working beyond their job. People are having to work together. People are so stressed out that if one day they are moving slower than normal, the rest of the team covers that slack without judgement. This is bringing unity to my team. My advice to everyone out there is to lean on each other, talk to each other and help each other out because after this settles down, it comes down to your life.

We are all in the same boat. I think this is going to humble everyone. Growing up, we had more of a community and we shared resources because we had to. I’m hoping this helps us realize we need to get together and take of care of each other. We are lucky we have healthcare and sanitation. It’s good to be a Canadian.

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