To The Daily Sun,

Every day that I go to work I hear of another nurse or aid who has given their notice. Nursing staff are leaving at an alarming rate and nobody is applying to fill their positions. I have worked at the N.H. Veteran's home in the nursing department for the last 14 years. Being a state-run facility the benefits are great and the pay is good but, we have no work/life balance.

When I started at the Veteran's Home getting a state job was very difficult and the Veteran's Home had a very good reputation and employees stayed for decades. It was like working with family who cared for each other and we had one mission to give the best care we can to our veteran's and we did just that.

Over the years I have worked with some of the best aides and nurses N.H. had to offer; many have retired or sought employment elsewhere and we are left with a dwindling number of hardworking and dedicated aides and nurses who give the best they can but most days we are working at minimum or below minimum and being required to do mandatory overtime and on the spot mandating with disciplinary action if refused. Most of the staff are already doing overtime and then are required to do more when is enough, enough? Where is our top heavy management? With the exception of a select few, why are they not doing overtime? Where are they on second and third shifts, weekends, and holidays?

Our management team are like race horses with blinders; they don't see the huge staffing problem we are having that gets worse daily. Where will the Veteran's Home be in a year? We are building a third floor but we can't staff the ones we have now. The current solution of working the little staff we do have more and more is just burning them out and causing staff morale and poor job satisfaction.

We need our management to want positive change, to become a work life balance employer by working with our union to create flexible schedules we are currently negotiating a contract; now is the perfect time! We want our management to work beside us during staffing shortages and make everyone feel their opinion counts! We want to stop the mandating and find new positive ways to recruit new help.

I challenge our management team to start creating positive change for a better workplace by Veteran's Day to celebrate a new positive outlook and workplace that can continue to provide excellent care for our family of veterans while valuing the work life balance of their employees.

Kelly Lee


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