25 Investigates: Workers at Roxbury nursing home say they’ve gone weeks without pay

BOSTON — Several workers tell 25 investigates that Roxbury nursing home Edgar P. Benjamin Healthcare Center has not paid its workers for several weeks.

Those workers reached out to Investigative Reporter Ted Daniel and said they’re struggling to pay their medical and housing bills without their paychecks.

Certified nursing aide Christine Miller said employees have yet to get a clear answer from management about the reason for the delayed paychecks.

“I’m tired of hearing lies after lies after lies,” she said. “Tell us the truth. If the place is going to shut down or whatever, let us know.”

Housekeeping aide Rudis Santos said he was last paid Nov. 22 – the day before Thanksgiving.

“In my situation? I do have another job,” Santos said. “I feel my coworkers, they don’t have another job. They just work here.”

Santos – and another employee who requested anonymity because of fear of retribution – told a 25 Investigates producer that some employees are also facing challenges accessing medical care with their health insurance. Those workers also told 25 Investigates that they question what the nursing home is doing with Medicare and Medicaid payments.

Miller said that nursing home CEO Tony Francis keeps promising he’s going to pay the nursing home’s 55 employees – but then doesn’t fulfill that promise.

“Everybody have damn bills to pay,” she said.


Francis told 25 Investigates that the Roxbury nursing homes continue to “face major fiscal challenges.”

But he said that employees will receive pay this week and will have access to their health insurance.

“While there was a temporary lapse in payment to employees, all employees are receiving pay this week, and all employees have access to their health insurance,” Francis said in an emailed statement. “We are resolving longstanding fiscal matters and will ensure that all employees continue to receive the compensation and benefits to which they are entitled.”

1199SEIU Executive Vice President Tim Foley said his union is looking into the issue.

“We hope management is able to pay caregivers what they are owed as soon as possible,” Foley said. “If not, we plan to pursue what is owed to workers with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office.”

According to IRS tax filings reviewed by 25 Investigates, CEO Tony Francis earned a base compensation of $628,592 in the 2021 tax year.

In 2020, Francis received an additional $61,248 in employee benefits. That’s according to an independent state agency known as the Center for Health Information and Analysis.


Workers provided 25 Investigates with a flyer they said was posted at the nursing home last week.

The flyer says: “Due to unforeseen circumstances, it’s a strong possibility that payroll will not be until Tuesday.”

Francis’s name is at the bottom of the flyer.

Workers also provided 25 Investigates with payroll notices issued in late November: one warns payroll could be delayed due to “unforeseen circumstances.” A second says paychecks would come “bi-weekly” instead of every week.

25 Investigates reached out to the AG’s office for comment. A spokesperson for the AG said the office is aware of the matter.

“Anyone who believes their rights are being denied should file a complaint with FLD at www.mass.gov/ago/fld,” AG spokesperson Max German said in an email.

The state Department of Public Health did not immediately respond to 25 Investigates’ emailed requests for comment Wednesday.


The Benjamin Healthcare Center is a non-profit nursing home with more than 200 beds.

One worker told 25 Investigates that about 77 residents currently live at the nursing home.

That worker – who asked to be anonymous because of fear of losing her job – told 25 Investigates that she is worried about resident safety as unpaid workers call out of work.

“Where’s the money?” the worker said. “This behavior affects the entire building, the workers. And it will trickle down to the patients.”

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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