About Us

District 1199J, the National Union of Hospital and Health Care Employees, AFSCME, AFL-CIO, is New Jersey’s original healthcare union. Formed in 1977, District 1199J represents healthcare and public employees including dietary and nurse’s aides, nurses, technicians and technologists, housekeepers, social workers, therapists, teachers, doctors, psychologists, pharmacists, clerical workers, and home care aides, juvenile detention officers, counselors and parks workers.

We represent more than 10,000 members at nearly 70 healthcare facilities, correctional institutions, public agencies and residential re-entry centers throughout the state. Some of these include: Clara Maass Medical Center, St. Barnabas Medical Center, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, Daughters of Israel Nursing Home, Inglemoor Care Center, Hoboken University Medical Center, Jersey City Medical Center, Capital Health Regional Medical Center, Mountainside Hospital, Visiting Homemaker Services, Morris View Nursing Home, St. Michael’s Medical Center, Union County Correctional Facility, CFG @ Essex County Jail, Hudson County and Community Education Centers (Logan Hall, Harbor House, Tully House, Delaney Hall)

The union’s origins date back to 1932 at the height of the depression when pharmacists working in drug stores in New York City decided to form a union, 1199. Their organizing efforts extended to other drug store employees such as porters, drug clerks, soda fountain persons and cosmeticians. By 1958, the decision was made to organize hospital and nursing home workers.

Nearly 20 years later, the National Union of Hospital and Health Care Employees, NUHHCE was formed with four established districts: 1199 New York which included Connecticut and New Jersey, 1199C in Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, 1199P in western Philadelphia and 1199E in Baltimore and Washington, DC. In 1977, an independent New Jersey district, District 1199J, was established and led by Aberdeen David.

Since 2006, Susan M. Cleary, has served the members of District 1199J as the union’s first female president.


Portrait of Susan Cleary
Portrait of Craig A. Ford
Vice President, Hospital Division
Portrait of Phyllis Shivers
VP, Nursing & Public Sector Divisions
Portrait of Grisel M. Anton
Vice President, Guild and Home Care Division