jt and Nurse Karen...

  1. I was reviewing the 2002 proposed bylaw changes that are to be adressed in the HOD this year and myself, and others among the state board were shocked to find out that there were some significant bugetary implementations that took place early this year. Now keep in mind that Wisconsin is not a union state, but how is it (from my understanding) that the ANA board can approve financial funding that comes out of my dues and goes into the UAN budget. And from what I understand it is quite the substantial budget. However, the key is that the bylaw changes are still proposed. So how can you have an unpassed bylaw but yet change the financial support to assume that the bylaw will be passed?

    The question that I kept hearing in particular to some of these bylaw changes were, What is ANA going to be if you start splitting off into WPA and UAN, etc. Particularly since from my perspective it looks as though we are feeding UAN to eventually split off from ANA.


    Any clarification would be helpful, because the bylaws are making my head spin and sometimes I just don't know all that inside information like you guys do.
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   moonshadeau
    No one has any ideas or thoughts?
  4. by   -jt
    Ok... be prepared for some more head spinning:

    <but how is it (from my understanding) that the ANA board can approve financial funding that comes out of my dues and goes into the UAN budget. >


    It doesnt. NONE of the funding for the UAN comes out of your dues. Non-union ANA members have nothing at all to do with the UAN or its financial support and that is how its been since the beginning. The UAN is self-supporting, which means that the only dues that go to the UAN are those of its own members - the unionized ANA nurses.

    ANA is not feeding the UAN. On the contrary, in the past, the dues of the 100,000 unionized members had been used to feed the rest of the ANA, because, as the majority, the unionized members carried the ANA budget.

    The UAN's substanial budget that you referred to includes money that the ANA currently OWES to the UAN from dues that UAN members have already paid to the ANA. That money is not coming from non-union members. Under the old ANA structure, all of the dues paid by the unionized members went straight to the ANA and the ANA then sent a percentage of our dues back to the UAN for collective bargaining services. But the ANA sent back only a fraction of what we were paying as collective bargaining members for those services. Now it will be paying back what it owes us. Thats one reason you see an increase in our budget. An inequity is being made right.


    Also, the significant budgetary implementations you mentioned are significant because that is a percentage of the amount that the 100,000 unionized members are paying and 100,000 is a significant number of contributors. The substantial dues that UAN members pay fund its substantial budget. We had been paying those dues all along but, under the old structure which existed before the UAN came into being, the ANA board could keep that money. The new bylaws remove interference in the UAN by the ANA and its board, and not only are we getting back more of what we already paid, but we will also be sending a larger percentage of our dues to the UAN. Thats another reason why you see an increase our budget.

    The bylaws change will allow for union nurses to divide our dues between the ANA & UAN. Instead of 100% of our dues going directly to the ANA with the UAN then having to wait for a hand-out of its own members money, a share of the union members dues will be paid to the ANA, and a share will be paid directly to the UAN. The portion of our dues that go to the UAN will be a higher, more equitable percentage of the total than it has been - to support the collective bargaining services that those dues are supposed to be paying for. Our total dues amount wont change. Its just getting divvied up differently & the union portion is not under the ANA's control. The amount that will be paid to the UAN is just a percentage of our total dues. We will still be ANA members and will still be financially supporting the ANA too.


    Ive heard that some non-union ANA members dont like the idea that the UAN members provide the union with a substanial budget. Ive heard that some non-union members feel that those funds should be kept available for their own state's use by being put to the ANA only & with-held from the UAN, but that money doesn't even come from them or their states or even from the ANA. Its money that the unionized members alone are contributing, so I dont know why any non-union members would lay claim to it. Non-union ANA members have to realize when looking at the UAN budget figures that this is only the unionized nurses own dues and while our budget is substantial by the mere fact that there are over 100,000 of us paying into it, its still only a percentage of the total amount we pay. The rest goes to support the work the ANA does for all nurses. Under the previous ANA structure, the bulk of the dues paid by union nurses could be used to support everybody else in the ANA, instead of being sent to the UAN to support the services we're paying for. That is not exactly fair. The ANA recognizes that and it is being rectified with the bylaws changes.

    The bylaws also ensures that financing for the UAN is not coming from anyone's pocket but our own.

    If you are not a collective bargaining member, your dues stay only with the ANA, as they always did.

    If you read them again, you will see that the bylaws expressly state over & over "dues paid by the collective bargaining members" & discusses how those collective bargaining members dues will be divided. It's only our own money that it's talking about.

    The bylaws also ensure that the UAN is in charge of its own finances and governance as an autonomous, independent associate, not under the control of the ANA board or non-union ANA members. The ANA, its board, & the non-union members have no input or control in the UANs finances or work. The ANA is not deciding the UANs budget. It is not up to the ANA to decide anything about the UAN. The UAN is independent and its relationship with the ANA is to be symbiotic & negotiated like the legally binding contracts we negotiate in our workplaces. The ANA, its board, and non-union members are not involved in UAN governance, finances, or decisions, just as they do not make the decisions for the current ANA affiliates - the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the American Academy of Nursing, and the American Nurses Foundation - and would not be involved in control of the Emergency Nurses Association either, for example, should it or any other nursing organization choose to became an associate member as well.

    Contrary to the notion that the UAN and its 100,000 members joining the ANA as a separate entity within the ANA will somehow lead to a split from the ANA, the truth is that the new bylaw & structure will allow greater opportunities for more nurses to become part of the ANA. The new bylaw that establishes the category of Associate Organizational Member (AOM), through which the UAN will be affiliated with the ANA, also makes it possible for all the other specialty nursing organizations to expand their current relationship with the ANA and actually be able to join ANA as Associate Organizational Members too. Theres a long list of nursing organizations that might be interested in that.
    (http://nursingworld.org/affil/index.htm).
    So rather than splitting up the ANA, this bylaw & restructuring will help the ANA to grow.

    The UAN exists because the unionized ANA members did not want to split away from the ANA in order to have a labor union. They wanted to have a national labor union for staff nurses but still be affiliated with the ANA too, so no, there is no intention to split away. In fact, we created the UAN in an attempt to avoid having to do that. Since the majority of the ANA membership and the largest state nurses assocs within the ANA are comprised of the unionized working staff RNs & they are the ones who built the ANA and pay for the bulk of it with their dues, they are not going to just walk away & give it up so easily.

    I dont know anything about the WPA, except that they are anti-union.
    Last edit by -jt on Feb 14, '03
  5. by   -jt
    <So how can you have an unpassed bylaw but yet change the financial support to assume that the bylaw will be passed?>


    They didnt. The ANA restructuring and dues payment restructure for the unionized members cannot be put into effect until after being accepted at the HOD meeting. I think the target date for implementation, once passed, is sometime in early 2004.

    The UAN is supposed to be an independent, self-supporting, self-governing, autonomous entity associated with the ANA, in charge of its own finances and work, but with the current conflicting bylaws & structure of the ANA, there can be interference in that. If the old ANA structure allows for the ANA & non-union members to have any say in UAN governance, allows for the ANA board to make decisions that affect the UAN, controlling UAN finances by holding onto the unionized members dues money with the ANA board deciding themselves how much it will allow us to have, for what, & when, because the UAN did not exist when that structure was established, then that structure is in conflict with the set-up of the UAN as a self-governing entity. The need for a correction in the ANA structure has been recognized since the UANs conception. The UAN requires self governance & independence as an associate of the ANA - not under the control of the ANA or its board - so the ANA structure has to be changed to allow for ASSOCIATE organizational affiliations or it could lose its 100,000 unionized members.

    Since that is the majority of its membership, where will the ANA be if it doesn't restructure to change with the times?

    The bylaws regarding the UAN do not affect the non-union members dues. The monies involved in the UAN are only the dues that the UAN members (unionized nurses) pay. The restructuring allows for more of our own dues to come back to the UAN for the services we are paying for - collective bargaining.

    Considering that their dues would not be affected, would non-union members really say "ok union nurses, we vote no to the new bylaws. You pay higher dues for collective bargaining but we are keeping it all for ourselves and you can just continue paying us. We'll decide how much your allowance will be & what will be done with your money"? Wouldnt that be like the non-union members were holding the union nurses' money hostage, trying to stand in the way of the UANs self-governance & autonomy, and trying to control our union - which they are not involved in, have no interest in, & do not financially support?

    If they want to cause the ANA to split apart this would be the way to do it because if there ever was such an unlikely scenario & it somehow ever passed an unacceptable resolution like that, over 100,000 unionized RNs would probably decide that they have no choice but to take their dues, & their union & the 26 state nurses assocs in it & walk right out the door to be their own organization. And since that is the majority of the ANA, without them, the ANA would implode. Nobody wants to see that happen. A lot of delicate negotiating and hard work on all sides & for many months went into crafting the restructuring to the satisfaction of all interests. I doubt it would not be approved by the delegates.

    Consider this - part of only the UAN members dues go to the UAN union. The non-union members dues do not & will not - and rightly so. A part of the union nurses dues go to the ANA too & the ANA sends money to help out some smaller, less financially secure state nurses assocs. Since most of the smaller ones are anti-union, some of the dues money that union nurses pay the ANA can actually end up in the pot used to finance some anti-union state assocs. So on the flip side, while your non-union ANA dues rightly do not go to support my union or collective bargaining, how is it that the ANA board can approve with-holding the bulk of my collective bargaining dues from my union and use it to support anti-union states instead???

    They can do that because my union didnt exist when those old bylaws were established and everybodys dues went into one pot. Now thats going to change. With the new bylaws, more of the union members own money will be staying with the union where it belongs, paying for the services it is supposed to be paying for.

    There really shouldnt be any objection to that because, just as non-union members dont expect to be funding the union, I dont think they would expect the union members to be handing over all our dues to fund their non-union associations either. Wouldnt it be kind of contradictory for them to agree that their non-union member dues should not go to support the union, and then vote no to the new bylaws because they want to keep the union members dues for themselves too???

    We are paying for collective bargaining services - so instead of it all being thrown into the general pot for everybody & everything else, more of our money should be going to our union for those services and the ANA board should have no control over it. The ANA recognizes that. Thats what this new bylaw is about. Also, it doesn't just apply to the UAN. It makes it possible for all those other specialty nursing organizations to expand their current relationship with the ANA and actually be able to join ANA as associate organizational affiliates too, so this restructuring will help the ANA to grow.

    When those other specialty nursing organizations begin to join the ANA as associates, I doubt any ANA members will think they suddenly have a right to all of the membership dues that those specialty nurses pay to their specialty organization or that the ANA should assume control of the specialty organization, its governance & its finances. It would be outrageous to even suggest such a take-over. Of course the specialty organization would remain the independent, distinct entity that it was - just now as a part of the ANA too. The same train of thought applies when it comes to the UAN because, rather than taking its 100,000+ members & splitting off from the ANA (which it could easily have done), the UAN is actually going to be the first specialty nursing organization to join the ANA as a new associate under this new bylaw.

    As the UAN is to be an independent associate, in charge of its own finances and decisions, without interference from the ANA, nor under control of the ANA board, (conditions which all the other specialty organizations that join would rightly expect), The ANA's structure has to be changed to provide for that, or the ANA could cease to exist.
    Last edit by -jt on Feb 14, '03
  6. by   -jt
    <What is ANA going to be if you start splitting off into WPA and UAN,.....from my perspective it looks as though we are feeding UAN to eventually split off from ANA.>

    my perspective is a little different:

    What are the NY Yankees when the batting coach "splits" to the batting cage with the guys in the lineup, and the pitching coach heads in the other direction down field, splitting off to the bull pen with the relief pitchers, while the 3rd base coach keeps an eye on the whole game, talks it up on the baseline, and brings the runner home? Arent they still the NY Yankees? Its still ONE TEAM - the players are just each exercising their expertise and working to improve what they need to improve for themselves. The pitcher and the batter may have different needs but going off with their coaches to work on those and increase their strengths doesnt mean theyre walking away from that team & starting a new one someplace else. The team doesnt break apart just because each coach took some of the players to fine-tune their expertise & focused on a different thing than the next coach. It's still one team, just with different parts, but working symbiotically. They still all meet back in the dugout, coming together as a much stronger team, & then they win the game.

    What would the team be if all the players didnt recognize each others expertise, strengths, and value?
    Last edit by -jt on Feb 13, '03
  7. by   NRSKarenRN
    Don't have time to respond due to working OT. Will write tonight.
  8. by   moonshadeau
    Thanks for your reply jt. I do have comments to respond to but pregnancy, 12 hour noc shifts and an average of 3 hours sleep a day in the last week due to obnoxious construction workers invading my house has left me mindless. I will respond when I get some sleep and can think again.
  9. by   -jt
    I just read on page 2 of the American Nurse 2003 that the WPA will have the same dues structure that the UAN will have. The ANA is becoming the "parent organization" & state assoc members will be sending a portion of their dues to the ANA for the general work & the rest to either the UAN, or the WPA, depending on whether they are from a collective bargaining state assoc or a non-collective bargaining WPA state assoc.

    WPA apparently is a collection of 7 small state assoc, mostly in the South. It's 5 state assocs that do not believe in unions and the non-union branches of 2 others and it works, it says, "to address workplace issues for individual nurses" in their states through discussion with hospital administrations. To me that sounds like a union and negotiations. But the WPA says that its not. It's an alternative to unionizing. Ok but I dont see the difference. Its website doesnt have much more info other than past articles from the ANA website, so I cant figure it out.

    And I dont know what the portion of dues that members of WPA state assocs will be paying the WPA is going to be paying for. The article quotes a WPA leader as saying they will be providing "products and services to individual nurses" but doesnt define what they are. The website says they offer information to individual nurses for advocacy in the workplace and "guidance in finding constructive ways of going back to their facility and resolving their issue". I dont know what that means or how what they do will be any different than what those state assocs & the ANA already do. I still dont understand what the WPA is.

    If I were a non-union member of the ANA, and the WPA was being funded with my dues, I would want to know what "products and services" I am going to be paying for, how the information they will be offering will be any different from what I can already get from the ANA, what they are going to be using my money for, how it will benefit me, and how this collection of state assocs is different from a union.

    If you find out, please post cause I really would like to understand the whole thing. Thanks.
    Last edit by -jt on Feb 14, '03
  10. by   NRSKarenRN
    Info re ANA's House of Delegates: Other House Actions


    Support for a strong U.S. position in the Negotiations of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control
    "Nursing Exploration" Badge
    One ANA-PAC
    Strategic Partnership Team
    UAN 2003 Budget
    ANA Financial Reports
    Fire and Life Safety Instructions
    Recognition of Mary Foley's Contributions to ANA
    Other Recognitions

    All can be found at:
    http://nursingworld.org/about/hod02/actions.htm#uan

    Much discussion and debate occured re percentage of UAN dues and compromise reached at convention.

    PA is a workplace advocacy state---support of nursing issues re legislative and local issues is found at our website: www.psna.org

    JT has presented the issue well. Hope this helps you.
  11. by   NRSKarenRN
    Check out the Jan/Feb 03 issue of the Amercian Nurse, pg 2--explains about UAN/WPA and services provided better than I can...when it 's added to ANA's website, will add link.

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