I have been in the CNA Union for 23 years, active as an Officer, Shop Steward, Negotiator and Professional Performance Committee Leader. I have been active both in the Hospital, Local and State Levels. I feel without the Union we would not have the Laws, Legislation, and the backbone to stand up to SUITES (aka Administration).
Unions are not just about pay raises, they are moral and ethical support for the nurses. They provide the strength we need to fight for Patient Rights, Advocacy, and Safe Working Environments. I have heard horror stories in NON-UNION Hospitals, and how the nurses as a whole had no say so in the environment and how it is run. At least with a Union you have a grievence system and support to problem solve.
I feel one of our biggest problems today is we as Nurses are not unified. Most are pushed to fight for themselves and hope they come out on top. If in fact we would all come together and STRIVE and FIGHT HARD for a SAFE FUNCTIONAL WORKING ENVIRONMENT..... we wouldnt dread going to work worrying about how many patients we have, what the acuity is, and how we are going to make it through another night without killing someone..... As you can tell I think the Union is a good thing !!