Brookdale Supports Associates During COVID-19 Crisis
BRENTWOOD, TN–Brookdale Senior Living Inc. has taken a number of steps to show its support of the company’s associates as it continues to lead through the COVID-19 pandemic that has upended daily routines across the country and the world.
The company has expanded the criteria for receiving grants from Brookdale’s Associate Compassion Fund (ACF) to include this unique situation. To bolster the funds available to associates through the ACF, and led by President and Chief Executive Officer Lucinda M. Baier, all members of the executive leadership team and some members of the Board of Directors have made donations from their compensation and/or paid time off (PTO). Baier, herself, donated the equivalent of over two months’ salary.
“Every day, our dedicated associates care for tens of thousands of residents and patients across the country,” said Baier. “Today, as our team is being challenged more than ever by the COVID-19 crisis, I see them as more than just caregivers on the frontlines doing an important job. I see Everyday Heroes, and we needed to step up and let these heroes know how much we appreciate them,” she added.
In addition to increased funds being available from the ACF, Brookdale has created a special resource center on its intranet to assist associates. This resource center provides information and referrals in one central place for COVID-19 health benefits coverage, the Associate Assistance Program’s (AAP) COVID-19 digital toolkit, and pointers to free online educational resources for homeschooling, among other resources.
The safety of associates has been as much a focus as the safety of residents and patients. Brookdale’s procurement and operations departments have worked tirelessly to obtain and distribute needed supplies, such as masks and gowns, to associates. The company has developed policies and procedures for COVID-19 and has provided additional training opportunities, such as a video to demonstrate proper handwashing techniques and a toolkit of preventative resources and information. The company remains focused on measures for prevention as well as protection of its associates during this crisis.
With 13 percent of the company’s workforce made up of nurses, it is providing personal messages of recognition for the more than 6,600 Brookdale nurses to express gratitude for their contributions. And the company has also made it easy for residents and patients, their family members, and in fact anyone in the general public, to recognize the importance of the work Brookdale associates do every day to keep America’s seniors as safe as possible. A special page on the company’s website includes messages of gratitude and thanks, and the opportunity to leave messages.
Another prong in the company’s commitment to associates was the recent launch of an aggressive hiring campaign to fill more than 4,500 positions. Brookdale is encouraging people who have recently been laid off to visit its careers page on the website for an opportunity in their local market and is working with companies in other industries that have furloughed employees to expedite its ability to hire employees to serve in Brookdale’s 743 communities in 45 states.
“People choose to live in Brookdale Senior Living communities for a variety of reasons. During this extraordinary time we continue to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those we serve,” said Baier. She added, “Our years of experience in preventing the spread of contagious illnesses as much as possible have become more important than ever and I am grateful for the dedication and commitment that is evident in our associates, who do extraordinary things every day. They are enriching – and saving – lives.”