BNB3: Driving The Week

NBC News Spotlights Wage Inequality, Shocking Profits at Nation's Largest For-Profit Hospital Corporation
In a national NBC interview with Cynthia McFadden that aired on Wednesday, Jamelle Brown, an essential worker at an HCA hospital shared what it has been like working for poverty wages in a pandemic – and how he found hope in his union.

American worker on NBC news

Jamelle Brown, an SEIU member and frontline healthcare worker at HCA, in new NBC Nightly News exposé 4.77 MB View full-size / Download

Extreme Wage Inequality at HCA
This NBC News infographic demonstrates the extreme wage inequality at HCA between the poverty wages paid to frontline workers versus their shocking executive compensation rates.

CEO Compensation chart

NBC Nightly News Analysis of Wage Inequality at HCA 140 KB View full-size / Download

Brown is an environmental services tech at an HCA hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, who has spent the pandemic making sure his patients and fellow healthcare workers are protected from COVID-19.

At the same time, he has been organizing with his coworkers to demand a living wage, access to personal protective equipment, and safe staffing levels.

In the new NBC spotlight, Brown shared the heavy consequences HCA's poverty wages have had on his life; spurring him into action with his union, SEIU. For more than a year, he and other healthcare workers fought for a union contract with one simple demand: respect us, protect us, and pay us. HCA made $3.75 billion in profits last year; Brown and many of his coworkers were paid less than $15 an hour.

This week, after more than a year of fighting for living wages amidst the pandemic, Brown and his coworkers ratified a new union contract they have won which will establish a $15 minimum wage in their hospitals.