Edwards works shift at nursing home
By BETH FOUHY, Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 15 minutes ago
NEW YORK - Democratic presidential contender John Edwards toiled on the early shift at the Sarah Neuman Nursing Home in Mamaroneck, a northern suburb of New York, waking patients, serving breakfast and living — for a few hours, anyway — the life of a $14-per-hour health care aide.
Edwards' visit was part of the "Walk a Day in My Shoes" campaign organized by the politically influential Service Employees International Union. In January, SEIU announced it would invite all the 2008 presidential candidates to spend a day on the job with one of its members, most of whom work in hospitals and other health care facilities.
With organized labor one of the most powerful influences in Democratic politics, several of the party's candidates have accepted SEIU's invitation, including Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chris Dodd and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson. But Edwards is the first to actually take part in a work visit.
Edwards, a former North Carolina senator, joined Elaine Ellis, 58, a certified nursing assistant who has worked at the Sarah Neuman home for 18 years. Edwards stopped by Ellis' apartment for breakfast before heading to the nursing home, where they clocked in for the 6:30 a.m. shift.
"It shouldn't be just PR," Ellis said. "It should be to educate the people who want to make decisions in the White House about what to do when they talk about health care."
Walk A Day In My Shoes 2008 Website
Very cool. I've done that kind of work and it can be very hard and thankless**.
With his interests in Health Care, it was a good pick for Edwards. I think we should suggest jobs for the rest of them.... any ideas?
**I'm flabbergasted that a Nursing Aide makes $14 an hour. That is unheard of in a facility, at least any I've ever heard of. Maybe private care.