2/4/09: Nursing Activism Primer-- Legislation, Lobbying/ Contacting Elected Officials - page 2

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  1. by   Patricia116
    Hi mattsmom81, always nice to meet other outspoken and strong-willed nurses.
    I am convinced that blacklisting is more prevalent than some would like to believe. I have personal knowledge of an excellent CCRN credentialed nurse who was at constant odds with her nurse manager because she was willing to speak out against policies which tended to deprofessionalize nurses and created unsafe nurse/patient ratios, among other things. After years of harassment, this nurse had had enough and applied for a position in a CCU at another hospital within the same system as her employer. She related to me that after a lengthy, very positive interview with the nurse manager of the CCU to which she had applied, she received a letter from the HR manager several days later stating that another individual had been hired who "better met the requirements of the position" and that there was "no specific weakness on her part". The nurse was flabbergasted. Incidentally, for weeks afterward, the hospital continued to advertise, in the newspaper and on their internet website, nursing positions for the CCU--all shifts, full and parttime!!
    I found it interesting that in this time of a nursing shortage crisis, especially critical care nurses, that the hospital did not offer this nurse another position within the hospital. I believe it is shameful how this nurse, and others like her, are treated so poorly because of their willingness to advocate for patient safety and better working conditions for themselves and their colleagues.
    I believe that nurses everywhere, who have the desire to promote the profession of nursing, must make a commitment to themselves, to each other, and to their patients, to stand up and be heard. Thank you NRSKarenRN for the legislative links, I have bookmarked them. I intend to become better acquainted with the legislators in my state.
    Hospital administrators everywhere should take note: Sign on bonuses and empty promises will not fill your vacancies. Ice cream sundaes during Nurses' Week will not quell the anger and resentment of being treated like an indentured servant. Why would any college educated individual willingly subject himself to the working conditions that are so prevalent in hospitals today? When administrators realize that RNs are not interchangeable with unlicensed patient care assistants perhaps the nursing field will become more attractive. When nurses are afforded the respect they deserve, not to mention the wages and compensation commensurate with their contributions to the health care field, perhaps more college students will select the Nursing major. Until then, don't hold your breath.
  2. by   funnygirl_rn
    I still continue to write to various representatives & I also get to speak to some influential people at Special Olympics fund-raisers.

    But, I honestly believe that we need to stand as a large group, in order to "fix" or change the situation. Sometimes, a newspaper ad, an organized march (like the docs do), going on National Public Radio, and/or television. Voices need to be heard..not swept under the rug!!

    Until we actively make our VOICES heard, we will continue to work in the environment that we do....because we allow it.

    Great post Patricia116!
  3. by   Patricia116
    Thank you, funnygirl_rn, I appreciate your comments.
    I am in total agreement with your observations. I was just thinking, after reading your post, that Nurses' Week would be a great time to organize a mini-march. Unfortunate that we have such a short time to plan.
    I am so glad I found this nurses' forum. It is wonderful to be able to discuss these issues with nurses who are not willing to sweep the problems under the proverbial rug.
    Keep up the great posts!!
  4. by   debbyed
    Thanks for the links Karen!
  5. by   funnygirl_rn
    Originally posted by Patricia116
    Thank you, funnygirl_rn, I appreciate your comments.
    I am in total agreement with your observations. I was just thinking, after reading your post, that Nurses' Week would be a great time to organize a mini-march. Unfortunate that we have such a short time to plan.
    I am so glad I found this nurses' forum. It is wonderful to be able to discuss these issues with nurses who are not willing to sweep the problems under the proverbial rug.
    Keep up the great posts!!
    You are welcome. Yes, Nurse's Week would be a great time to organize a march...but...not enough time in advance. I am proud to say that I have plenty of friends who are vocal & would march....as well as four Aunts' who are now retired from nursing & would also participate. Maybe someday...soon.
  6. by   -jt
    <I was just thinking, after reading your post, that Nurses' Week would be a great time to organize a mini-march. Unfortunate that we have such a short time to plan.>
    <
    <Yes, Nurse's Week would be a great time to organize a march...but...not enough time in advance.>


    A DC Rally and much more has already been planned, scheduled, and organized by nurses of 7 unions of the AFL-CIO and its in the works. For more info, see thread titled "Nurses Rally in DC Scheduled for May 6th". Feel free to copy that post & pass it along to your aunts or post wherever you like. There will be nurses rallies at state capitols all across the country during Nurses Week, with the one in DC happening on Nurses Day. Have fun!
  7. by   funnygirl_rn
    Originally posted by -jt
    <I was just thinking, after reading your post, that Nurses' Week would be a great time to organize a mini-march. Unfortunate that we have such a short time to plan.>
    <
    <Yes, Nurse's Week would be a great time to organize a march...but...not enough time in advance.>


    A DC Rally and much more has already been planned, scheduled, and organized by nurses of 7 unions of the AFL-CIO and its in the works. For more info, see thread titled "Nurses Rally in DC Scheduled for May 6th". Feel free to copy that post & pass it along to your aunts or post wherever you like. There will be nurses rallies at state capitols all across the country during Nurses Week, with the one in DC happening on Nurses Day. Have fun!
    jt....thanks..I did see your other thread after I previously posted above. Anyways, yesiree...I already down-loaded, copied, & fowarded the site/info to my friends, co-workers, cousins & Aunts ...who are all nurses. Many of us will be on the metro to D.C. on the 6th. Do you know what time it starts? Again, thanks so much for all your great posts & information. I really do enjoy reading them! Hope that week is a noteworthy one! You have fun too!
  8. by   -jt
    <Do you know what time it starts?>

    The info is on the flier that cn be downloaded at http://www.aflcio.org/issuespolitics...rses_flier.pdf

    Rally and press conference at 1:45pm on the West side of the Capitol Building. Meetings with US Senators and Congressional Representatives in their offices figure to begin around 2:30pm - if the nurse, legislative, and consumer advocate speakers at the Rally podium finish up on time, that is. Call your elected official as soon as possible, tell him youre coming & make your appointment for sometime after 2:30.

    Tip:
    To help you prepare what you want to say in your legislative meeting about safe staffing, theres " crib notes" available.
    just download the"talking points" brief from http://www.aflcio.org/issuespolitics...policy/nurses/

    And make copies to leave with each of the officials you meet with -adding your name, address and phone number.

    Have a great time.
    Last edit by -jt on Apr 28, '03
  9. by   funnygirl_rn
    Originally posted by -jt
    <Do you know what time it starts?>

    The info is on the flier that cn be downloaded at http://www.aflcio.org/issuespolitics...rses_flier.pdf

    Rally and press conference at 1:45pm on the West side of the Capitol Building. Meetings with US Senators and Congressional Representatives in their offices figure to begin around 2:30pm - if the nurse, legislative, and consumer advocate speakers at the Rally podium finish up on time, that is. Call your elected official as soon as possible, tell him youre coming & make your appointment for sometime after 2:30.

    Tip:
    To help you prepare what you want to say in your legislative meeting about safe staffing, theres " crib notes" available.
    just download the"talking points" brief from http://www.aflcio.org/issuespolitics...policy/nurses/

    And make copies to leave with each of the officials you meet with -adding your name, address and phone number.

    Have a great time.
    Thanks jt! Somehow I failed (agh!) to click on one of the "red" high-lighted words for information....so, I missed the time/date flyer. However, I did get the other important tips on the other fliers. Again..thanks so much for the information on the important "tips" you posted above. You are so helpful with your abundance of nursing info/news! Enjoy yourself too!
  10. by   wishingmary
    I wish Brian, our moderator would put your thread in a permanent listing so that it can always be found in a hurry and when nurses can't sleep at night. I got a comment from one of my classmates regarding all the legislation jt (Jenny) has been telling us about. She told me maybe I found my calling but that she has been so busy. Placency will only let what little we have be lost like giving up our overtime pay and any hope of lowering the nurse-patient ratios. I wish we were as active as the AMA, we would be heard but what is one voice here and one voice there if we each don't write our legislatures. The hand delivery service offered on the net will even e-mail the sender with when their legislators were handed the letter(s).
  11. by   Pinky18
    Edited - spam - TOS violation.
    Last edit by Nurse Ratched on May 12, '03
  12. by   -jt
    <regarding all the legislation jt (Jenny) has been telling us about.... I wish we were as active as the AMA, we would be heard but what is one voice here and one voice there if we each don't write our legislatures.>

    remember that motion in Colorado's legislature that would change nurse licensure there & cause Colorado RNs to be able to work only in Colorado? The voice of nurses got that defeated.

    PS
    If you ever heard my NYC voice & Jennys Minnesota voice, there aint no way youd be gettin us mixed up. lol
    Last edit by -jt on May 13, '03
  13. by   wishingmary
    Thanks Karen for the link. I found out that HR 117 had been taken off the floor because of our LETTERS against it. There had been a major flood in the legislatures' mailboxes. And I am proud my letters contributed to the flood. Now at least our employers can't substitute time off for overtime pay. I even sent out the information to my whole class using the e-mail group we are all enrolled in. I'm not yet sure about the rest of the bill and whether we can still get OT pay at time and a half. If this is still current, then I'll write my legislative paper in school on this topic since I got involved in it over the spring/summer. Just got my syllabus. However I'm having trouble finding these bills on the internet now. Any suggestions or is that a sign its a done deal for now - off the floor and dead. I know jt was very involved in this too. Again thanks.

    Mary

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