National Nurses United

National Nurse Magazine December 2012

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Letter from the Council of Presidents sometimes it���s hard to believe another year has come and gone, and a new one is about to begin. When we stop to review everything that���s happened and what we���ve accomplished over the last 365 days, we can���t help but feel a mixture of satisfaction, pride, excitement, hope, and exhaustion! We guess it���s kind of like looking back on a shift; you got a lot done, but there���s still so much work left to do. Across the nation, our NNU nurses were fighting the good fight. In Massachusetts, RNs lobbied mightily to save a major state mental hospital, and won! RNs there also got a new ban on forced mandatory overtime passed and signed. Minnesota nurses beat back an anti-union ���right to work��� bill in their Legislature. And California���s Sutter Health RNs went on strike five more times this year to hold the line against outrageous concessions their employer wants that would roll back decades of hard-won standards. As always, winning safe staffing ratios is at the top of all of our agendas. Minnesota and Michigan both initiated campaigns for a ratios law, and Florida and Texas RNs are getting ready to do the same. This year was also the year that we really launched and advanced our campaign for a Robin Hood Tax, a small tax on Wall Street trades of stocks and other financial instruments that is a key component of our Nurses��� Campaign to Heal America. Who could forget our May rally in the heart NATIONAL NURSE,��� (ISSN 2153-0386 print/ISSN 2153-0394 online) The Voice of National Nurses United, December 2012 Volume 108/9 is published by National Nurses United, 2000 Franklin Street, Oakland, CA 94612-2908. It provides news of organizational activities and reports on developments of concern to all registered nurses across the nation. It also carries general coverage and commentary on matters of nursing practice, community and public health, and healthcare policy. It is published monthly except for of Chicago with musician Tom Morello? We worked with Rep. Keith Ellison to introduce the bill, HR 6411, in September, and are now steadily building support and gathering sponsors for this critical measure. The world's largest union of public workers, PSI, just endorsed the Robin Hood Tax and nursing ratios at its December conference! And, of course, this year was an election year with so many crucial races and measures for nurses to influence. Well, our hard work on the political front really paid off as we managed in Congress and many states to elect pro-nurse candidates and defeat bad ballot measures. While this is going on, all of us are still doing the nittygritty job of growing and building the union: organizing new facilities, bargaining contracts, and going out on strike when necessary. Congratulations to nurses in California, Missouri, West Virginia, Ohio, and Texas for voting in the union and joining us! And to the Veterans Affairs nurses for winning their best-ever master contract! And for our colleagues still bargaining and fighting: Keep at it, stay strong, and we���ve got your back. Because we���re all in this together. Here���s to 2013, a new year with new opportunities. We bet that we���ll top 2012! Deborah Burger, RN | Karen Higgins, RN | Jean Ross, RN National Nurses United Council of Presidents combined issues in January and February, and July and August. Periodicals postage paid at Oakland, California. POSTMASTER: send address changes to National Nurse, 2000 ��� Franklin Street, Oakland, CA 94612-2908. To send a media release or announcement, fax (510) 663-0629. National Nurse��� is carried on the NNU website at For permission to reprint articles, write to Editorial Office. To subscribe, send $40 ($45 foreign) to Subscription Department. Stay connected @RNmagazine, @NationalNurses FLICKR: YOUTUBE: FACEBOOK: TWITTER: Please contact us with your story ideas They can be about practice or management trends you���ve observed, or simply something new you���ve encountered in the profession. They can be about one nurse, unit, or hospital, or about the wider landscape of healthcare policy from an RN���s perspective. They can be humorous, or a matter of life and death. If you���re a writer and would like to contribute an article, please let us know. You can reach us at EXECUTIVE EDITOR RoseAnn DeMoro EDITOR Lucia Hwang GRAPHIC DESIGN Jonathan Wieder COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR Charles Idelson CONTRIBUTORS Gerard Brogan, RN, Hedy Dumpel, RN, JD, Jan Rabbers, Donna Smith, David Schildmeier, Ann Kettering Sincox PHOTOGRAPHY Jaclyn Higgs, Tad Keyes, Erin FitzGerald

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