Friday, January 8, 2010

Nurses From Phillipines Claim Indentured Servitude by Recruitment Agency and Suffolk County DA

"Filipina Nurses Sick of Abuses in USA"

By ADAM KLASFELD
 
"Eleven Filipina nurses say recruitment agencies lured them to America with false promises of salary, benefit and housing, and had them arrested on bogus charges when they refused to work under the abusive conditions.

The nurses say Sentosa Care, a recruitment agency, manipulated the Suffolk County Court System with help from District Attorney Thomas Spotta III to force them into 'indentured servitude.'

The United States faces a massive shortage of nurses and the Philippines is a prime recruiting ground. To distinguish themselves from the 'myriad' other agencies operating in the Philippines, Sentosa promised their nurses would be 'direct hire' rather than 'agency' nurses, according to the federal complaint.

The nurses say they were promised 8-hour shifts, extra pay for night work, medical and dental benefits, malpractice insurance, two months of housing, and competitive salary.

The agency directed... them to sign 3-year contracts with the nursing home Avalon Gardens Rehabilitation and Health Care Center, which denied them insurance, made them work overtime and denied them time off and vacation, the nurses say...

Despite Avalon's repeated breaches of contract, it threatened [to] fine them $25,000, plus $50,000 in punitive damages, if the nurses resigned, they say.

They sought help from the Philippines Consulate, which referred them to an attorney who told them they were not bound to the contact because their employers had breached it. The nurses say that when they resigned in April 2006, defendant Brent Philipson, threatened to have them 'prosecuted, deported, faced with license revocation and subjected to a civil suit.' Philipson is a principal of co-defendants Sentosa, Avalon Gardens and Prompt Nursing Employment, according to the complaint.

The agents filed a civil suit that month in Nassau County Supreme Court for an injunction preventing the nurses from talking about their dismissal, but the judge dismissed the motion in June...

The nurses say that 3 weeks after they resigned, a person allegedly acting on Avalon's behalf called the Suffolk Police Department to file a complaint, but the police did not take action because "in their opinion, no crime had been committed."

They claim that Sentosa's attorney then set up a meeting between the agency and District Attorney Spotta, who told the nurses that they were not being targeted, ignored the information exonerating them of criminal negligence and secretly submitted a fraudulent investigation to a Grand Jury.

The resulting indictment charged the nurses with conspiracy, solicitation, endangering the welfare of a child, and endangering the welfare of a physically disabled person, according to the complaint.

On Jan. 13, 2009, the Appellate Division of Suffolk County Supreme Court barred Sentosa from prosecuting the indictment and found 'the greatest risk created by the resignation of these nurses was to the financial health of Sentosa.'...

The nurses sued Spotta, Assistant DA Leonard Lato, Suffolk County, Sentosa Care LLC, Avalon Gardens, Prompt Nursing Employment Agency LLC, Francris (sic) Luyun, Bent Philipson, Berish Rubinstein, Susan O'Connor, and Nancy Fitzgerald.

Read the full article: http://www.courthousenews.com/2010/01/08/23471.htm

Read the Complaint: http://www.courthousenews.com/2010/01/08/Nurses.pdf

1 comment:

Recruitment Agency Philippines said...

On this complaint, I think you choose the right decision... Direct Hiring is a good idea... But i suggest hiring applicants should be Online Communication so it is easy for applicants to communicate to your company... ^^,