TEAMSTER: Mark Jones
Worksite: Contra Costa Regional Medical Center
Years on the job: 7
Job title: Institutional Services Worker
What that Means: "My typical day is in the emergency room cleaning up after the patients and helping out with patient care as far as the cleanliness of the environment. Making sure that the patients of the county have a safe and clean environment."
Human kindness: "There was a patient who had gone to use the restroom—the only restroom in the emergency—and she had an accident. I could see it in her face, she was just horrified and she was embarrassed. I said, 'Hey, look, nobody's going to know what just happened here. I will take care of this. I work here and this isn't the worst thing I'm going to clean up today. You're here to get better.' I went and cleaned up the mess and afterwards she approached me and said, 'Thank you so much for your kindness. It means so much to me.' I will always remember the look of horror on her face and then being able to help her in such a basic way. I was just doing my job. It's not glorious, but that day it meant something to her."
On being a Teamster: "I'm happy to be a Teamster. I've been working here for seven years, and for six of those years without union representation. Before, management was running over us. I felt like I had no voice. The Teamsters came in and educated us. It's taken some time, but now people are listening to me, the janitor, people are listening to me now, and they didn't before."