ANA & You: History & Current Vision - page 2

by NRSKarenRN 8,257 Views | 25 Comments Admin

ANA WEB SITE: HISTORICAL SKETCH OF ANA September 2, 1896. Delegates from 10 alumnae associations met near New York City for the purpose of organizing a national professional association for nurses. 1897. Constitution and... Read More


  1. 0
    First of all, I pay something like $520 per year to MNA.
    Of that money, $55 goes to my District association, where I am involved in the practice committee (it is the only committee I am currently active in, but through the years, I've been on numerous committees there). I also get reduced fees for CEU's that my District Assoc. sponsors; I pay between $15 and $21 for CEU programs that non-district members pay $35 for. Besides that, I get a newsletter that is sent out by the District, they sponsor scholarships, and give out awards and have a national nurses banquet that is fantastic.
    Also out of my MNA dues, about $88 goes to the national association- ANA. From that money I receive both AJN and The American Nurse, a magazine and a newsletter that keep me current in what is happening in ANA. I can also get malpractice insurance, travel discounts, and several other perks I haven't used for quite some time. With my membership to ANA, I can receive "Action Alerts" as to what is happening on Capital hill that may impact nursing practice.
    The rest of my dues goes to MNA, which does collective bargaining for my workplace, sends out a newsletter and encourages me to be involved in various activities in the Association. I have served on the Practice Commission at MNA, and have gone to MNA conventionsfor something like 20 of the past 21 years (I missed one when my daughter refused to be born prematurely). In those 20 years, MNA has encouraged it's members to be involved at all levels of the Association.
    I have also been a delegate to the ANA convention for 10 years, and I was blown away by the Supervision and Delegation paper that was presented to the ANA convention back in 1991 (I think). That paper spoke of the risks to our licenses as more unlicensed personnel would be under our supervision. ANA saw the current shortage and problems facing the bedside nurse even back then.
    MNA did an Executive Summary paper back in 1999 on "Concerns for Care" about the nursing shortage back then. Both ANA and MNA have been seeing these problems coming for several years. We have been trying to raise the nations' and also nursings' consciousness about these problems for at least 10 years. ANA has tried to get funding for nursing schools increased at the national level during this time. Instead it was cut.
    I believe (and have found) that ANA is responsive to its' members as are the state associations. IF THE BEDSIDE NURSE IS NOT A MEMBER OF ANA, who does the state association speak for? By choosing not to be members, you have kept your (proverbial) heads in the sand and are suddenly taken by surprise because of the nursing shortage and mandatory overtime. I may not be happy with parts of the whole association, but BECAUSE I AM AN ACTIVE MEMBER OF THIS ORGANIZATION, I work to change it from the inside. Don't knock it until you have researched what you gain as a memeber of this organization.
    If California has such a great nurses association, why do they have the worst nursing shortage of any state in the union? This is just a question that has been bothering me for a while; I am not trying to be obnoxious here, I really would like to know the answer to this question. Could someone please give me an answer ?
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    Wildtime, I've been on finance committees and also newsletter committes. When you start multiplying the "50 cents/ newsletter" by the number of members; figure in the time and cost for the association employees' work (plus their benefits, etc); things start to add up to quite a bit of $$$$. And if you haven't noticed there has been a change in postal rates and many newsletters are no longer able to afford to send them out.
    I know you want to know where the money goes before you are involved with something. Are you also this cautious with your groceries, your church and your educational system? (sorry, I just had to throw that in- I guess I'm feeling a bit defensive because you are attacking something you have admitted to not ever being part of).

    [This message has been edited by Jenny P (edited April 19, 2001).]
  3. 0
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by wildtime88:
    [B]individual travel expenses/reimbursements, perks, benefits, and possible bonuses?


    I am a staff nurse and a member of the ANA. I pay $47 a month to my state association in union dues - from which $85 a year goes to the ANA. I am also an elected officer of the Nurses Executive Council of my bargaining unit at my hospital & participated in the Nurses Legislative Day that my state association held at our Capitol last month. It cost me $325 in travel & hotel room. I was fully reimbursed every penny. Had I purchased food, other than the free meals that were provided, I would have been reimbursed for that too. For this trip, the reimbursement limit was $500. Our association is very careful about how it spends our money. I do not begrudge NYSNA or the ANA their nice offices, travel reimbursements, other "perks" or anything else. They are not out vacationing on some archipelago with our money. They are working hard for us & it's money well spent. In fact, purchasing our own building for NYSNA operations is something we are very proud of having been able to do. Nobody has free reign with our money. I see how the nurse reps have to watch every penny they spend & account for it & always have to go with the least expensive way because it will be scrutinized. They have limits on what they can spend. I feel a little sorry for our nurse reps. Most of the staff RNs they represent in NYC earn higher salaries than the nurse reps who negotiate those salaries for us.
  4. 0
    Originally posted by Hardknox:
    If ANA is the answer to our problems, how come California and Massachusetts have disaffilliated?

    oh that makes a lot of sense. 2 groups chose to disaffiliate for their own agendas & that means the ANA is worthless? lol. ok... so following that logic....if leaving the ANA is the answer, then how come the other 52 consituent members remain affiliated?
    PS
    California is STILL in the ANA. Only California's bedside nurses left it & now have an affiliation with the Steelworkers Union.

  5. 0
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by wildtime88:
    [B]Level2Trauma,If you can not handle the possible truth and wish to blindly follow any organization with out asking questions, then that is your choice. [Q]

    as members we dont have to ask the question. the answer is provided to us every year. We each receive the financial statement breakdowns in the mail.
    And you can get more info from the website or just call them up.
  6. 0
    Originally posted by wildtime88:
    In a way it might be the best thing for the nursing profession for the ANA to just go away and a new and improved or dedicated hospital nurses association to be formed. .

    well thats not going to happen so the alternative is you may just have to ignore us. New nurse associations can be formed by whoever wants to form them but that does not mean that the ANA is going to cease to exist.

    Feel free to join whatever association you want to create. There are 2 million non-ANA nurses out there so the grapes are ripe for picking. Create your association, organize the unorganized & leave the rest of us alone. It would be nice if people stopped wasting so much time, effort & energy complaining & critisizing, rather just ignored the group they dont like & started at least doing something to fix the problems theyre griping about. Just go & do it. What does the ANA have to do with it? Who's stopping you from making whatever association you want to make? Start in the South. Maybe even Texas. Most of those nurses dont belong to the ANA so you wont even have to deal with raiding state associations to build up your membership numbers. Many of those nurses need education on becoming active & united & you could provide a needed service. So why waste time here complaining about the "deficiencies" of the ANA. Forget the ANA. Get up & get moving. Put your money where your mouth is & do it better.

    How about you just act like we dont exist. Make a new one or just join the association of your choice & get busy. Pretend we're not here. Forget about what we're doing & do what you want to do however you want to do it. Maybe some day our group & whatever group you create can work together on something for the common good like the ANA & CNA have in the recent past, or like the ANA & the AFL-CIO are now. But dont expect us to give up what we're doing & disappear just because youve shown up on the scene.
  7. 0
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by wildtime88:
    [B]
    I agree that a fair salary should be paid even up to 50,000 dollars a year for the ANA chair person. I also agree that her travel, lodging, and meals should be paid for while traveling on business, but only couch airline fair, a modest room and not a suite, and modest meal costs. I do not believe a luxury rental car should be included [q]


    I think the president of my association should have a room of large enough size so that work can be done. And since she is traveling for my business, business class is fine with me. She has to eat while she is working & reasonable meal allowances for the duration should be no problem with anyone. Not only should she have a car at her disposal in the cities she travels to on our business, she should also have a driver (chauffeur!) who knows his way around & is available at a moments notice. And fyi, I do not think offering the president or any other official of the ANA $50K/yr - a salary that is well below the starting salary of a new grad ADN ANA member in NYC - could be called "a fair salary" for the work they do as leaders of our national professional association. And since Im the one who is a member, I get to have the last word on it all with my vote. ; )
  8. 0
    Originally posted by natalie:
    [B]Since 93% of America's nurses have never joined the ANA, exactly where do all you naysayers expect ANA's powerbase to come from?
    I'll say it again. There are 2.6 MILLION RN's in this country. There are 180 THOUSAND members of the ANA.

    yet even still, the ANA IS powerful & has accomplished so much. In spite of the fact that it consists of only 7% of the nations nurses, it has the recognition & respect in Washington DC & with the powers-that-be & is considered THE voice of the nursing profession on the national level. And it gets the job done. Just look at what happened the day the ANAs online staffing survey was released recently - over 100 TV News stations immediately reported on it & its been in the news repeatedly since then. Thats just one example of how when the ANA speaks, the powers-that-be pay attention.
    Its really incredible when you look at it... that this organization which has only 7% of the profession supporting it has been able to do so much & be the powerhouse that it is. And it says something about the strength of its membership.

    I think much of the nay-sayers criticism comes from jealousy.

    Non-members may like to say that the ANA does not represent them but it does... everytime our leadership goes before a US Senate panel or speaks to a TV news reporter or media journalist & tells them about our working conditions, our workplace safety risks, our mass exodus out of the profession, it IS speaking for all nurses - not just the dues-paying members. And when our leadership is writing legislation & lobbys Congress to improve our working conditions, to protect us from retaliation for reporting pt safety concerns, to force our employers to purchase risk-free needle devices, to provide safe & adequate lifting equipment & safe staffing guidelines, to eliminate mandatory overtime, to allow reimbursement for Nurse Anesthetists, to allow AP RNs to become OR First Assistants etc, it is doing so for ALL nurses - not just ANA members. And when their legislations on our behalf are made into law, the laws cover & apply to ALL 2.6 million nurses - not just the 180,000 who supported the fight. And ALL nurses benefit, not just you & me & the others who paid to fund the effort. ALL nurses.

    So yes, even though they actually have only 180,000 dues-paying members making it work, the ANA actually DOES represent & speak for ALL 2.6 million nurses in this country.

    ps
    besides the free subscriptions & everything else already listed as "perks", for our $85/yr dues we get all of the above & much much more. We get the benefits of the American Nurses Association working for us.
    If anyone doesnt know what that means, check out the website.
  9. 0
    Thanks, Christina. You so elequently stated my feelings always much better than I could ever do myself.
    Julie (JT)your response to each of wildtimes points is right on the mark.
    Tim, Level 2 and Jenny: glad to know others are working on the professions behalf. I would like to post more than I do, but fibromyalgia of the forearms has sigificanly flared and btwn writing at work, cut n paste from ANA sites...best I can do.
    The wheel doesn't need reinvention, just a little strengthening, spit and polish.

    [This message has been edited by NRSKarenRN (edited April 21, 2001).]
  10. 0
    jt,
    I also believe it's pretty amazing what ANA has done over the years, given the pathetic lack of membership.

    I think a good part of the wrath towards ANA is directed from nurses who work in states with very weak nursing associations. Or states that have had particularly deplorable nurse/patient ratios, as California. It's too bad ANA, as a national voice, was targeted, instead of the state association.

    Disaffiliation is not the solution. Working towards a strong state association is perhaps the answer. Although in some states, like Florida, it is mindboggling as to how these staff nurses can take back their state association or change the socio-political environment of a state that hates unions.

    State by state strength will make ANA strong. Not the other way around.


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