KMUD News: “Protesters Rally against Closure of Skilled Nursing Facilities”

Here’s additional media coverage of the October 13, 2016 protest against Brius’ threatened closure of three nursing homes in Humboldt County.

KMUD Radio News, based in Redway, Calif., aired the following 7-minute story in its daily news broadcast. The coverage, which begins with the sounds of protesters chanting in the background, includes interviews with family members of the nursing home residents who will be transferred hundreds of miles away if Brius follows through with its threatened closures.

Jeff Graham tells KMUD he makes a weekly 67-mile drive to visit his mother who is partially paralyzed and lives at Brius’ Pacific Rehabilitation and Wellness Center. “If they send her out of county, I will not be able to see her and she will just die,” he tells KMUD. (3:55 min.)

Kellie Shaner, a caregiver at St. Joseph Hospital Eureka, tells KMUD her family struggled to bring her mother from a nursing home in Crescent City to one in Eureka in order to be closer to her. For the past several months, Kellie’s mother has been living at Brius’ Eureka Rehabilitation and Wellness Center, where she receives regular visits from her parents, children, and grandchildren. All this may change, says Shaner, if Brius follows through with its threatened eviction of her mom and nearly 200 other elderly residents. “The thought of [my mother] being shipped out of town again is terrifying,” says Shaner. “We fought really hard to get her back down here locally, and now they are telling us they are going to ship her out to who knows where, somewhere farther than Crescent City.” (1:19 min.)

Others interviewed in the news story say Brius’ threatened action would have “catastrophic” and “terrifying” consequences for the community. One community member tells KMUD that Brius owner Shlomo Rechnitz’s threatened closures and mass eviction of fragile nursing home residents is “starting to feel like extortion.” (5:05 min.)