Following intense lobbying by AFT Healthcare-Maryland, Delegate Joseline Peña-Melnyk sent a letter to Secretary of Health Robert Neall, inquiring about understaffing at state psychiatric hospitals. The union thanks Del. Melnyk for her followup and will continue to monitor the discussions between the delegate who is a member of the Health and Government Operations committee and the Maryland Department of Health.
During the legislative session, union activists and staff made presentations to Del. Melnyk detailing the work conditions and the effects of understaffing. She understood their position but needed data to address the Department of Health about discrepancies in staffing numbers. Once the union was able to get that information back to her, she began inquiring about the inconsistencies.
The staffing issue has been a well documented problem for state facilities dating back years.