Workers at Veterinary Emergency Hospital in Rochester, NY Can Vote to Unionize, NLRB Official Says

UPDATED: January 4, 2022*

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently ANNOUNCED that it will conduct a mail ballot election among approximately 146 employees (excluded: administrative employees, managers, veterinarians, guards and supervisors as defined in the Act) employed at 825 White Spruce Blvd, Rochester, New York known as Veterinary Specialists and Emergency Services (VSES).

Employees will vote whether or not they wish to be represented for purposes of collective bargaining by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

Earlier this year (about May 15, 2021), Pathway Vet Alliance, LLC (which is in the business of acquiring and managing veterinary practices nationwide, with roughly 10,000 employees and locations in 37 states) acquired Monroe Veterinary Associates, which included Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Services (VSES), 15 smaller practice hospitals, a laboratory, a crematorium, and a rehabilitation facility, all located within and around Rochester, New York.

According to VSES employees who spoke to WXXI NEWS:

  • “The change in ownership of their hospital has led to cuts in employee health care benefits and part-time workers no longer receiving discounts on emergency and specialty services for their own pets, a perk they said was previously available to all employees.” In addition, “work-life balance has suffered because the company is inflexible with requests for work schedule changes. Part of the problem is a lack of workers.”

The National Labor Relations Board is scheduled to count the VSES employees’ mail-in ballots on January 14, 2022.


  • Pathway Vet Alliance revamps to Thrive Pet Healthcare (11.30.21)

    • Pathway Vet Alliance announced today that it is now Thrive Pet Healthcare. According to Stephen Hadley, DVM, MS, CEO of Thrive Pet Healthcare, “We wanted our name to reflect our holistic view of delivering care—to pets, pet parents, and the veterinary professionals who care for them.”
  • A Closer Look at Veterinary Unions (4.19.21)

    • The downside to veterinary corporatization? According to Liz Hughston, president of the National Veterinary Professionals Union, “it’s nearly impossible to voice your concerns owing to the multiple layers of management. She explained that this is extremely problematic for an industry in which many employees are underpaid and feel undervalued.”

*UPDATED: Inserted quotation marks in the ‘related’ section for Liz Hughston, president of the National Veterinary Professionals Union; and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM).