CHICAGO (WBBM Newsradio) — Workers at a Burbank nursing home chose the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday to stage a one-day walkout.

Nursing home employees at Veracare Burbank walked off the job at 6 a.m. Monday to begin picketing for a one-day strike.

Taylor Tefft, a union organizer with SEIU Healthcare Illinois & Indiana, accused Veracare’s owner of stripping long-time workers of their seniority and failing to bargain in good faith for nearly a year.

“We haven’t necessarily had success during bargaining. The owner seemed unwilling to recognize the rights of these workers, and continues to violate them. So we feel that this action is going to send a message, and push us closer to our goal of getting a fair contract,” she said.

Tefft said there’s reason for cautious optimism.

“We have had luck in the past month, after the labor board found merit in our unfair labor practice charges, in them seeming more willing to bargain with us. So we do have a couple bargaining dates set up,” she said.

If a contract agreement isn’t reached by spring, Tefft said Veracare workers could walk off the job again.

“While we’re ready to fight, we do remain hopeful that we can come to a resolution, and the workers have said they are going to do whatever it takes to come to a solution,” she said.

WBBM Newsradio has reached out to Veracare to respond to the union’s accusations, but the facility said no one was available for comment.