UAN affiliates with AFL-CIO - page 2

Anybody wondering where Ive been??? Come on admit it - you missed me! Well, Ive been a little busy...... UAN Nurse Delegates to Convene in Washington, DC, June 27-28 AFL-CIO Charter Vote to... Read More

  1. by   Barbara Rose
    Whoa!!! Who says in Texas there is no mandatory overtime? Better check again. If there is not an RN to relieve you of your patients then you can't leave. That equals mandatory overtime. Yes, the hospital should have to furnish the staff but if another RN doesn't come in, then you have to stay or you will be abandoning your patients. Please check your nurse practice act! It happens often in the state of TExas just as it does in other places. If your hospital doesn't or hasn't practiced this, great and perhaps we would all like to come to work their but, I have practiced in NE Texas for 20 years and have had to work mandatory overtime. So, this blanket statement won't work. As well, if it wasn't a problem in Texas, why is TNA addressing this issue and why has it come up at each of the town hall meetings? Sorry, Texas is pretty good but not perfect!!!!!!!!!!
  2. by   -jt
    <I think we would all agree that Medicine, Law and Dentistry all qualify as professions. Every doctor, lawyer and dentist I ever met works on a fee for service basis (not an hourly wage). They get to control their own practice and determine whether or not they will accept you or me as a client. >

    and THOUSANDS of those docotrs, lawyers, & dentists are organized in unions - mostly branches of the SEIU - which is an affiliate of the AFL-CIO. Here's a little piece from a NY docotr's UNION newsletter:

    "Kings County Restores Wrongfully Laid-off Doctors

    This June, KCHC laid off nine of its doctors as per-session physicians. However, when the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation laid-off these doctors, it did not realize that they are all per-annum physicians. This improper layoff broke two important agreements in the contract. First, HHC must lay off physicians with respect to their classification, which dictates that all per-session doctors in a department be laid off before any per-annum doctor. Second, if a per-annum doctor were to be laid off, then HHC must give the UNION one month's notice.

    Doctors Council immediately grieved the improper layoffs. As a result of pressure from the UNION, the HHC RESTORED all nine doctors and compensated them for the time they were laid off.

    Doctors Council is working to ensure that these doctors are fully compensated and restored to their position prior to the layoffs. In addition, Doctors Council is currently grieving the layoff of two KCHC per-session doctors who were laid off without notice to the Union. As a result of this grievance, one of the doctors' lines has been restored. The UNION is currently grieving payroll's withholding one of the doctor's salary for the time he was laid off.

    If you are or know of a member of Doctors Council who was improperly laid off, contact us immediately. We will continue to grieve any improper layoffs until we are convinced that every layoff was carried out in accordance with the provisions of the Doctors Council UNION contract.

    HHC Announces Severance Package

    As we went to press, Doctors Council learned that the Health and Hospitals Corporation will offer a severance package.........."
  3. by   -jt
    <Here's a little piece from a NY docotr's UNION newsletter: >

    And heres some more. Incidentally, this MD/Dentist's union is an affiliate of the AFL-CIO too.

    "Delegates: Lifeblood of the Union

    In Doctors Council, the delegate is a key person., serving as the critical link between the union, its members, and hospital management. The importance of their role is evident when one considers the specific responsibilities of delegates.

    As the on-site representative of Doctors Council, the physician-delegate keeps the members at his/her facility informed about the union and keeps the union leadership and its staff informed about developments at the facility. The physician-delegate keeps the members informed about management's activities in the facility. The delegate can also encourage members to become involved in the activities of the union at his/her facility (e.g. JPCs). And delegates may also serve on various union committees and influence union policy.

    It bears mentioning that those who serve as delegates to Doctors Council receive little remuneration for the work that they do save the satisfaction that they are helping to improve the terms and conditions of employment for their fellow members.

    Below is a listing of HHC facilities and Mayoral Agencies and their delegates:


    Stephen B. Feldman, M.D.

    Barry Liebowitz, M.D.

    Robert Maslansky, M.D.

    Mary Jo Messito, M.D.

    Milutin Mijuskovic, D.D.S.


    Ingrid Allard, M.D.

    Child Health:

    Elaine Friedlander, M.D.

    Robert Lee, M.D.

    Correctional Health:

    Harold Appel, M.D.

    Dental Health:

    Donald Nadel, D.D.S.

    Gary Peters, D.D.S.

    Wallace B. Thompson, D.D.S.

    Dept. of Health:

    Alan S. Dunn, M.D.

    Roberta E. Leon, M.D.

    J. Lim, M.D.

    Lilla Lyon, M.D.

    Dept. of Sanitation:

    Borisse Paulin, M.D.

    East New York:

    Cheryl Worrell, D.M.D.


    Francis Friedhoff, M.D.

    A. Stephen Passloff, M.D.

    Guillermo Seco, M.D.

    Karin Siljestrom, M.D.

    Celia Tiangco, M.D.


    J. Lynch, M.D.

    Kings County:

    Eugene Becker, M.D.

    Kildare Clarke, M.D.

    Dyadand Hegde, M.D.

    Rosemary Jackson, M.D.

    Melvin Curtis Mahoney, M.D.

    Joseph Marcus, M.D.

    T. Ramachandran, M.D.

    Dorian E. Roye, M.D.

    Hervey Sande, D.P.M.

    Yogendra Saxena, M.D.

    Howard Stark, M.D.

    Warren Tanenbaum, M.D.

    Elmer Twente, M.D.


    Walker Bacon, D.D.S.

    Mental Health:

    Howard Owens, M.D.


    Richard Levy, D.D.S.


    Mark Flomenbaum, M.D.


    Flize Bryan, M.D.


    Michel Antoine, M.D.

    Richardo Galdamez, M.D.

    Yousef Mahadin, M.D.

    Nora Nieva, M.D.

    Celia A. Quinnonez, M.D.

    Sundaram Raju, M.D.

    Why Doctors Must Unionize:

    Medicine, once an art, has become just another business--big business with big profits. As a result, doctors' compensation, working conditions and their methods of diagnosis and treatment are being dictated by corporate administrators, causing frustration, despair and a sense of helplessness among dedicated health professionals This "sea change" did not occur with the participation of doctors. On the contrary, doctors were engulfed by powerful business forces, which recognized that huge profits could be made by running our nation's healthcare system like a corporation and by treating doctors and other healthcare professionals as commodities.

    Indeed, doctors now find themselves in precarious economic and ethical situations where medical decisions are being made by corporate business policy rather than appropriate medical practice.

    Doctors have never been formally trained to deal with this new economic order. Our professional organizations are prohibited by law from dealing with the "economics" of our profession. Their main functions are essentially geared toward education and credentialing.

    So the question for us becomes--Who can handle our economic issues? For salaried doctors, the answer is clear--UNIONIZATION. A union's expressed purpose is to ASSURE THE PROTECTION OF IT'S MEMBERS INTERESTS. It NEGOTIATES physicians' wages, their hours, their benefits and assures doctors' due process.


    The notion of a professional in medicine has certainly changed. As a profession today, we are invisible. Are we to continue to stand idly by, powerless, as others dictate how we provide essential medical care?

    Is it professional to allow entrepreneurs to dictate medical diagnoses and treatments? Is it professional to allow them to place gag orders on us, require drive-through mastectomies and one day post partum hospital stays for new mothers? Is it professional to ask patients to diagnose themselves prior to going to an emergency room, or allow substitution for doctors' prescriptions as corporate policy?

    As we are economically assaulted, we are being forced to deny our training and forsake our medical oaths in order to earn money for others. The era of denial is over. The concept that we are treated as professionals is a myth, and at this point, believing such, is destructive to regaining our power and authority over medical decisions. Although powerful both economically and politically, our adversaries are not doctors, they do not possess our skills to heal.

    If we organize, we will be a force to be reckoned with. We can become a countervailing power, regaining the respect, the dignity and the power over our own profession. As healthcare professionals, we are trained to heal and protect our patients. We must take bold steps if we are to regain control of our profession.

    My union -- the Doctors Council -- represents over 3,000 employed doctors. We have negotiated contracts since our inception in 1973. We are also familiar with labor and management as both adversaries and, in the best sense, partners.

    Physician unions should not be feared by management, rather they offer administrators hope for instilling new programs, new initiatives, and improving patient care within their organizations.

    Sadly, we are witnessing the undoing of our professions. We have spent a great deal of time and resources to learn and master our art. These days, our time and effort translate into what a corporation considers expensive labor.

    In an effort to run health care as a profit-oriented business, our education and expertise are not considered important factors in determining compensation.

    But it is important. We are in the healing profession, where what we know and how we are trained to think and act makes a difference; often THE difference.

    We cannot turn our backs on thousands of years of study and evolution that has produced the daily life-giving miracles that society takes for granted.

    We are interdependent healers who relieve suffering and we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us. This is our time on the watch.

    It is for these reasons that we must organize. At this, the close of the second millenium, are we to cast aside our accomplishments and knowledge and revert to the dark science of medieval times?

    I find it difficult to believe that the saving of life and the relief of suffering is now a corporate business. In the corporate healthcare world, those who deliver the care are not to be consulted, but rather managed. They are taught to limit care, quiet their voices suspend their knowledge and serve to create a healthy profit for others.

    It is a malignancy of the spirit to extract a profit by denying care. It is a deal not only with the devil but with death itself. Let us fight this as well as we have fought other diseases. This entrepreneurial obsession is as deadly as the diseases we have vanquished before.........."
  4. by   -jt
    "Doctors' Unions -
    When North Jersey doctors joined a union in November of 1997, they became one of the latest groups of physicians throughout the country banding together to fight the managed-care industry. "The revolution has begun," said Barry Liebowitz, an official with a doctors' union in New York City........

    "The next five years will change the next 20 years," said Dan Lawlor, organizer for a doctors' union in Washington, D.C. "More physicians will join unions and start to prevail. The political movement is under way." Lawlor's union represents 10,000 doctors in California, Arizona, Illinois, Oregon, New York, Florida, and Connecticut.....

    The move to organize doctors into unions and other groups has gained momentum since 1997 and now includes physicians in Florida, California, Texas, Arizona, Washington State, Washington, D.C., and Massachusetts, in addition to New Jersey and New York. Shortly before 500 North Jersey doctors joined a union in the Fall of 1997, 100 pharmacists and 200 South Jersey doctors also joined a union............

    About 150 doctors were recruited in Tucson, Ariz. in November 1997 by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, said Lawlor, an official of the union. In Texas and California, about 1,400 podiatrists have recently joined the National Doctors Council, a branch of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees based in Washington, D.C..........

    In its petition to the NLRB, Local 56 in Pennsauken, Pennsylvania said independent practitioners should have the right to collective bargaining. The union argues that these physicians are, in effect, employees of managed-care companies, because the insurance companies dictate the terms of patient care.......

    "This is a major case of great magnitude that will have an impact on other cases," said Liebowitz, president of the Doctors Council in New York, the nation's oldest doctors' union, which has 3,400 members and was founded 24 years ago to represent doctors who are not independent practitioners. The Doctor's Council has negotiated contracts for 5,000 independent doctors in Arizona, Illinois, Massachusetts, Hawaii, and Texas. "This is big time."........"

    "The Union of American Physicians and Dentists Wins Big! 800 doctors, 550 with teaching appointments at UCLA, USC, and Charles Drew Hosp, vote for unionization!
    Also, visit our website to review the following articles:

    Clinics doctors, dentists unionize: San Jose Mercury News, January 27, 2000

    Doctors Getting Organized: San Jose Mercury News September 12,1999

    Who Needs a Doctors Union? : Dallas Morning News July 18,1999

    Angered by H.M.O.'s Treatment More Doctors Are Joining Unions : New York Times Feburary 4, 1999

    When Doctors Join Unions: by Grace Budrys, Cornell University Press, C 1997

    FTC Letter

    The Union of American Physicians and Dentists Helping Physicians

    Afraid to Join a Union?: Physicians News Digest February 1997........"

    "The First NATIONAL Union for Doctors Is Formed -
    October 24, 1996, will be memorable as the beginning of a revolution--a national effort by health care providers to take back their profession from big business and return quality and caring to the treatment of the American health care consumer. At a press conference held at the New York Podiatric Medical Association, twelve health care professionals expressed their personal views as to the importance of this new Guild, Local 45 of the Office and Professional Employees International Union, AFL-CIO........"

    Doctors' unions will protect patients against abuses
    by Dr. Glenn Flores, pediatrician at Boston Medical Center and an assistant professor of pediatrics and public health at the Boston University School of Medicine........

    "Every day in my inner-city pediatric practice, I see children and parents who have no choice but to confront homelessness, violence, hunger and poverty. William McGuire, the CEO of United HealthCare Corporation, had a stock-option package valued at $61 MILLION $$$ in 1997. I would love to see McGuire sit down with one of my families and explain why it is reasonable for him to earn tens of millions of dollars in one year, while they can be denied basic medical care and health insurance. Until that meeting happens, our only hope for protecting people from the greed and abuses of managed care may be the unionization of doctors on behalf of their patients......"

    So can we now put the erroneous "professionals don't join unions" mantra to rest? Hey Barabara, how come its "professional" for MDs & Dentists & Podiatrists to join unions in the great states of Texas & Arizona, but NURSES there don't think they themselves are professional enough to deserve the same protection & voice in their own workplace and practice? Anyway, this thread was about the UAN & its historic note to affiliate with the AFL-CIO. Just pointing out here that there is nothing unprofessional about what we are doing in standing together with other organizaed nurses across the country to take back our profession for ourselves & the American public. Its the PROFESSIONAL thing to do.
  5. by   lubdo
    hooray and three cheers for all of the courageous nurses who wised up and joined the union. For those critics who say it is "unprofessional" for us in this profession to organize ,I say you must have gotten used to having that boot up your ass and now you know no better and like it.Wake up.. I like nursing, but I am what I am . I punch in at the beginning of the shift much like Laverne and Shirley at Shotts Brewery. I have ineffectual charge nurses and managers who give preferential treatment to those she likes and makes everybodys life a living hell. I work shift work and have not one iota of negotiating power in terms of my benefits , salary or work environment . Why shouldn't nurses organize? The teachers have a very strong union that has bolstered their profession and given them a way to improve their profession. As far as teaming up with the AFL-CIO, a "blue collar" union which critics think below them in some way I say BS. My uncle was a business agent and my father was a union electrician they both worked hard for their families so their children could go to college and better themselves, we have 3 lawyers , 2 cardiologists, a stockbroker to name a few in our family all thanks to that "blue collar worker" who worked shift work , but through the union recieved a good wage and benefits and was able to do this for their family. So hoooray for the union . Please come to Indiana we need you
  6. by   -jt
    Please come to Indiana we need you>

    Check with the UAN.
    I believe there may be some discussion about developing a shared-services arrangement with a nearby state association UAN member that does have union services which can be offered to nurses in Indiana. But I always get those "I" states mixed up! The New Jersey Nurses Association does not provide collective bargaining but NJ nurses wanted it, so their state association recently went into a partnership with the New York State Nurses Assoc/UAN to provide those union services to NJ nurses who want it. The nurses are members of NJNA and NYSNA is their local union. This is probably going to be a growing trend with the UAN & other non-union state associations that want it.
    (NJ state motto is "NJ & you - perfect together". We just took that literally.)
  7. by   Jenny P
    Hi Julie! It was so nice to meet you in D.C. and finally put a face to your name. I wish I could have met a few more "" people while I was out there, but I'm still not the most mobile person around- as you could probably tell.
    Julie was a delegate to the UAN House of Delegates. The UAN is the collective bargaining part of the ANA. I was a delegate to the ANA House of Delegates; and this past week was phenomenal in the history of the ANA. The House of Delegates for the ANA voted in some major structural changes that allowed the UAN charter to meet the AFL-CIO rules re: mandatory membership (for union members); AND (for those of you who don't like unions) also put in changes to develop the Workplace Adocacy Programs (WAP) for right to work states and other workplaces where there isn't collective bargaining.
    I just got home from the ANA convention tonight (Sunday); and am slightly brain dead from sitting so much; but I wanted you all to know that EVERY SINGLE NURSE at the convention worked together in the House of Delegates and we came out with some awe-inspiring changes. NO ONE shot us in the foot; there was no "eating of our young"; everyone worked together as a team to get the work of the House done to help nursing move forward! (Well, we did manage to talk some of the process through until even Roberts' Rules made sense; but that may have been necessary to do in order to get to where we needed to go!)
    I am just so thrilled at how smoothly everything went through!!!!!!
    Thanks, Julie, for being involved in the UAN. And now that I'm home; I realize I didn't get a picture of both of us together! I like the backside of the camera better than the front.
  8. by   imaRN
    Good Job jt and thanks for so much information, it will keep me surfing for awhile. I don't wear a collar and" Proud of It !!"
    Unions are the best way for a positive and collective change.
    ...imaRN Union Nurse!!!
  9. by   -jt
    It was my pleasure jenny. I didnt even think of pictures until I just read your post! We'll just have to do it again next yr. I see that Wild is now on a kick trying to pit ANA union nurses against ANA non-union nurses. Too bad he wasnt there to see how well the 2 groups really work together. On June 26th, 94 ANA union staff nurses, elected by fellow union staff nurses in their state to represent them thru their 25 unionized state nurses associations which comprise the UAN, voted unanimously to affiliate with the AFL-CIO.

    On June 28th, the ANA House of Delegates - which is EVERY one of the 54 state associations, including all the 29 non-union ones, voted overwhelmingly to make the ANA bylaws changes that would faciliate that affiliation for their union nurses. There was much celebration amongst all of them, even though the majority of nurses at ANA are not and have never been eligible for collective bargaining (mainly because of the states where union membership is severely limited).

    If there was a big "fight" between the non-union & union RNs of the ANA, the resolution 3 yrs ago to move forward & create the strong UAN never would have passed a vote in the first place, never mind this! So the new song the poster is singing about the fight in the ANA between the union & non-union RN members is just another of his inaccuracies. And Jenny & I, being members & right in there to know first hand, can attest to that.
  10. by   -jt

    Largest Independent Nurses Union Votes to Affiliate with the AFL-CIO -

    With More than 100,000 Members, United American Nurses Joins Forces with 13 Million Member AFL-CIO for Better Patient Care, Respect and Working Conditions for Nurses -

    Washington, DC -- This morning, registered nurse delegates of the United American Nurses (UAN) National Labor Assembly voted to affiliate with the AFL-CIO, forming an historic partnership with the federation's 64 unions. AFL-CIO President John Sweeney addressed UAN delegates and congratulated nurses on their unanimous vote to affiliate with the AFL-CIO at Washington's Omni Shoreham Hotel this afternoon.

    The UAN is the national union arm of the American Nurses Association (ANA) and includes more than 100,000 registered nurses from state nurses associations or collective bargaining programs in 23 states and in the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands. The ANA is the largest and oldest professional association of registered nurses in the country and has had no formal external labor affiliation until this time.

    "This new partnership with the AFL-CIO and its member unions can have a tremendous impact on health care in this country," said UAN President Cheryl Johnson, RN. "With their vote to accept our AFL-CIO charter, UAN delegates sent a message loud and clear that we are ready to roll up our sleeves and get down to the business of solving together the patient care crisis in this country."

    With the addition of the UAN, the AFL-CIO will represent 1.2 million health care workers. The AFL-CIO also represents the largest organized group of health care consumers, health plan purchasers and frontline health care workers in the U.S. AFL-CIO unions bargain to provide health insurance for more than 40 million workers and family members -- accounting for one out of every four Americans with employment-based coverage.

    "Together, the UAN and unions of the AFL-CIO can provide a powerful and effective alliance that will take on the current health care system's inadequacies, unfair policies and unsafe conditions that plague both American families and health care workers," said AFL-CIO President John Sweeney.

    On May 2, 2000, Sweeney was authorized during a meeting of the AFL-CIO Executive Council to issue a charter to the UAN, pending a vote by the nurses' organization. Later that day, the UAN's Executive Council unanimously passed a resolution recommending that delegates to the UAN's National Labor Assembly (NLA) take up the charter application to the AFL-CIO when the Assembly convened this month in Washington, DC. Delegates to the 2000 NLA had resolved to pursue a charter with the AFL-CIO.

    "This is an historic day for the UAN," said American Nurses Association (ANA) President Mary Foley, MS, RN. "We are pleased and proud that the union nurses of the UAN have affiliated with the AFL-CIO it's a step that is good for nurses, patients and quality health care. We look forward to joining forces with the AFL-CIO in the fight for better patient care and safe working conditions for nurses."

    Johnson of the UAN said nurses are organizing into unions at an increased pace to gain a voice on the job and on behalf of quality patient care, and that giving nurses a voice can address the nationwide staffing crisis.

    "Health care executives, policy makers and the news media are all talking about the critical nursing shortage and the fact that the profession has lost its popularity as a career choice for young women and men," added Sweeney. "But this is a staffing crisis that can be stopped by giving nurses better working conditions, recognition and respect for their professional expertise and appropriate compensation and benefits. Hospitals need not look outside this country's borders, but inside their own facilities to solve this shortage, and through their unions, nurses will help them do so."

    According to the findings of a February survey of more than 7,000 registered nurses by the ANA, America's nurses feel that deteriorating working conditions have led to a decline in the quality of nursing care. Specifically, 75 percent of nurses surveyed feel the quality of nursing care at the facility in which they work has declined over the past two years, while 56 percent of nurses believe that the time they have available for patient care has decreased. In addition, more than 40 percent of nurses surveyed said they would not feel comfortable having a family member or someone close to them be cared for in the facility in which they work.

    The United American Nurses, the labor arm of the American Nurses Association, is the nation's largest union of RNs and is comprised of state nurses associations or collective bargaining programs from 23 states, plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands
  11. by   Jenny P
    Julie, I just want to thank all of those UAN delegates (of which you were one), and all of the other ANA delegates (and I was one of them) for all of the hard work and dedication that it took to bring ANA to this place at this time. There are many nurses who do not understand what the UAN affiliating with the AFL-CIO means to us. There were many nurses who were delegates at the ANA House of Delegates who work in right-to-work (ie: non-union) states; and they voted for this change in structure and this charter so that the UAN could move forward. The workplace advocacy changes that were also made to help all nurses in all of the different work places will benefit every nurse. I am so proud to be part of the ANA, an association that is trying to improve our profession. It was an honor to be part of this.
  12. by   -jt
    Remarks by John J. Sweeney
    President of the AFL-CIO
    at the UAN National Labor Assembly
    Washington, DC
    June 28, 2001

    "Thank you, Susan [Bianchi-Sand], for those kind words and the contribution you continue to make - not just to the UAN and the union movement - but to working women and working families all across our country......

    This is truly an historic moment, and I want to express my gratitude to everyone who has worked so hard to bring us to this point..........

    I want to thank Cheryl Johnson for her guidance of the UAN and her support for this affiliation - there isn't a better frontline nurses or a more committed union leader in America, and we're delighted to welcome her as a leader in the AFL-CIO..........

    I also want to thank Mary Foley for her leadership of the ANA and for her personal friendship - Mary and Cheryl and I went to jail together during the nurses' strike at Washington Hospital Center last year . . . Mary, I want you to know I'll go to jail again with you and Cheryl anytime, and that's a promise.............

    I don't want to neglect the other officers of ANA and UAN and members of the Task Force on Affiliation, because you're all terrific - Ann Converso, Jeanne Surdo, Deborah Thoms, Walter Fredrickson, Ed Goldberg, Linda Warino . . . John Karebian, Ken Fitzsimon, Evelyn Sommers, Linda Stierle, Barbara Blakeney, and Martha Orr - thank you all for the confidence you've placed in us..........

    As a side note, congratulations to you, Martha, and to the New York State Nurses Association on your Centennial - 100 years of caring and giving and fighting and winning in my home state.............

    And to all of you gathered here, congratulations and thank you, too. As you know, the AFL-CIO Executive Council authorized me to issue a charter to the UAN. With this vote, you've taken the next step. It's a great milestone, and I look forward to the ANA's issuing its formal blessing later this week. This was, I know, a monumental decision for all of you. On behalf of the other officers - Richard Trumka and Linda Chavez-Thompson - and all the affiliates of the AFL-CIO, I am delighted to welcome you to the AFL-CIO. ..........

    It took a lot of hard work and more than a year to get it done, and I want you to know that you have not misplaced your trust and we're going to be even better together.............

    So we're off - with high expectations of our new partnership, with the UAN as a full-
    fledged affiliate of the AFL-CIO, larger than half the other 64 unions in our Federation, with instant credentials and a major voice, in all the work of the American labor movement and nowhere more than in our work in health care, where we're going to be a formidable force for change-a force that together represents more than 1.2 million health care workers, including 300,000 registered nurses, and 40 million consumers of health care who are union members and family members..............

    It's a strong new alliance that comes none too soon, because the problems we all face in health care and the problems faced by frontline nurses are mind-boggling --- drug prices and the cost of care going up, quality going down, 43 million Americans uninsured, the lack of accountability, short-staffing, rising acuity, professional standards under attack ........

    ...and a critical national shortage of nurses, brought on by health care providers who would rather scour the world for cheaper labor than to invest in developing and maintaining a superior RN workforce here at home.............

    As recent studies dramatize, that attitude by employers is having a disastrous effect on our health care system and on nurses --- the Harvard study showing how short-staffing is putting patients at risk, the University of Pennsylvania report showing only 35 percent of nurses say the care on their ward is "excellent" and your own ANA survey documenting the tremendous stresses on nurses that are driving so many out of the profession...............

    With this affiliation, you've chosen the right direction toward solving these problems- the American labor movement has long been involved in the dual struggles for dignity, rights and respect for caregivers and for affordable, high-quality, accessible, healthcare for everyone..........

    And I am personally invested in the struggle --- my home union, SEIU, has long been on the frontlines of health care policy, bargaining and organizing, and I was chair of the AFL-CIO Health Care Committee before I was elected president of the Federation. And of course you join many other strong, committed unions also representing nurses, especially SEIU, AFT, AFSCME, UFCW and AFGE............

    I've been involved in health care long enough to know we can't solve all of our problems overnight, but I've been involved in the union movement long enough to know we can't solve any of them if we don't stand up and fight. And we can do that even better together..............

    We proved we know how to do it at Washington Hospital Center, and just this week the courageous nurses at the Fairview Hospitals in the Twin Cities proved they know how to do it --- and congratulations to those 1,350 fighting RNs........

    And believe me, the nurses are going to win at Forum Health in Youngstown too.............

    As important as these victories are, we have an even bigger fight on our hands --- these three strikes all have something in common. They have all been prolonged because the hospitals have been able to use public funds to pay U.S. Nursing Corps to airlift in replacement RNs........

    Together, I want us to go after this rent-a-replacement operation and put a stop to the outrageous use of public tax dollars to pay for scab nurses.............

    We also need to look for national solutions to the problems facing the nursing profession and to the crisis in our health care system, and to that end the AFL-CIO will convene a summit meeting of top nurse union leaders this fall to collaborate on a strategy of mutual support and aggressive organizing.............

    The truth is that even if we are able to come up with all the answers to all of our problems, we can't implement them without more members and more strength. That's why organizing is the top priority of the AFL-CIO and I know it is shared by UAN and all of you...............

    Let me closed by asking for your support as a full participant in our Federation and our shared mission. One of the great strengths you bring to the AFL-CIO is a nationwide membership, and I want to urge you to take your skills and your spirit, your professionalism and your pride into our State Federations and local Central Labor Councils..............

    Just as nurses need support from other workers, other workers need and deserve support from you --- whether they are orderlies and nurses aides in hospitals and clinics, or home health workers, or even plumbers or auto workers or teachers..............

    I'm excited about the role UAN can play in speaking out for a union voice for women workers and for professionals.............

    I'm excited about our new partnership and the role UAN can play in helping us reach our goal of restoring the voices of working families in our workplaces, our communities, our government and in the global economy............

    The sooner we roll up our sleeves and get at it, the sooner we'll get there --- and I know the leadership and members of UAN are ready to do just that............

    The 64 unions and 13 million members of those unions are ready to join you.............

    Let's get at it. And I look forward to hosting you all at AFL-CIO headquarters tonight..........

    Thank you and God bless."