FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nurse endorsements recognize lawmakers working to solve the crisis of understaffing and retention, hold corporate healthcare executives accountable, and put patients before profits in our hospitals
(St. Paul) – September 3, 2023 – Ahead of Labor Day, nurses with the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) today announced their first endorsements of candidates for the 2024 election cycle, recognizing MNA Champions in the Minnesota House who are working to solve the crisis of understaffing and retention, hold corporate healthcare executives accountable, and put patients before profits in our hospitals.
“There is a crisis of corporate greed in our hospitals, driven by executives who are more focused on the bottom line than the bedside,” said Mary C. Turner, RN, President of MNA. “Nurses are proud to back candidates who stand with nurses to put patients before profits in our hospitals and urge all Minnesotans to join us in returning these healthcare champions to office.”
To be endorsed as an MNA Champion, candidates must demonstrate exceptional commitment to MNA priorities including solving the crisis of nurse retention and patient care, combatting increased corporatization and consolidation in healthcare, and supporting the rights of all workers seeking a collective voice for dignity and respect in the workplace.
The incumbent House candidates endorsed today as MNA Champions for their commitment to priority issues for nurses and patients are Kaela Berg (55B); Robert Bierman (56A); Sandra Feist (39B); Emma Greenman (63B); Jessica Hanson (55A); Sydney Jordan (60A); Tina Liebling (24B); and Liz Olson (08A).
About the MNA Champion Endorsed Candidates
- Kaela Berg (55B): This past legislative session, Berg was the lead author on legislation to ban captive audience meetings for workers seeking a collective voice in the workplace, as well as a co-author the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act and legislation to regulate hospital mergers. Berg is a strong public advocate for the need to ensure safe staffing in our hospitals.
- Robert Bierman (56A): Bierman was the lead author of H.F. 402, the new law to provide critical oversight over healthcare mergers and acquisitions. Bierman’s efforts helped to pass one of the strongest laws in the country for the protection of healthcare workers and patients against healthcare monopolies, working closely with MNA nurses. Bierman also served as a co-author of the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act.
- Sandra Feist (39B): As the lead House author on the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act and the Nurse and Patient Safety Act, Feist worked tirelessly for safe staffing, workplace safety measures, and student loan forgiveness to protect, recruit and retain nurses at the bedside. In addition to her close work with MNA, Feist sought input from hospital stakeholders and legislators to improve and strengthen the legislation.
- Emma Greenman (63B): During this past legislative session, Greenman authored numerous bills to protect workers; she authored the Warehouse Worker Safety Bill and was a strong co-author on Paid Family Medical Leave and the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act. Greenman is consistently among the strongest voices in the legislature against the influence and power of corporate executives over workers.
- Jessica Hanson (55A): Hanson worked hard this past session to advance the children’s mental health bill supported by MNA nurses, to drastically reshape the resources and systems in place to provide mental health services and supports to Minnesota children. Hanson was also a fierce advocate for nurses as a co-author of both the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act and the hospital merger regulation bill, H.F. 402.
- Sydney Jordan (60A): In a session with many wins for workers, Jordan was at the forefront as the lead author of the Union Freedoms Bill which was included in the strongest labor omnibus bill ever passed in Minnesota. Jordan’s efforts helped to ensure that staffing ratios are now a mandatory topic of collective bargaining for public workers, including MNA nurses employed in the public sector. Jordan also signed on as a co-author of the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act.
- Tina Liebling (24B): Libeling’s steadfast leadership as the Chair of the House Health Finance and Policy Committee helped ensure that MNA nurses’ top priorities, the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act and the hospital merger regulation bill, moved through the legislative process. In addition to her role as chair, Libeling was a strong co-author of both bills and worked collaboratively with nurses on solutions to the challenges in healthcare in Minnesota. Chair Liebling’s work to advance healthcare reform in Minnesota is vital as she works with her colleagues to remove profit driven structures from our public health insurance programs and pave the way for single-payer healthcare in the state.
- Liz Olson (08A): A key legislative win for workers this session was the new Earned Sick and Safe Time law, which ensures workers earn sick time for the hours they work. Olson was the lead author on this important piece of pro-worker legislation and was a strong co-author of the Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act, working with other legislators to build support for the bill to retain nurses at the bedside to protect patient care.
Nurses Care, Nurses Vote
MNA endorsements follow screening sessions where nurses pressed the candidates for their commitment to key issues for nurses and patients. Following screening sessions with the candidates, recommendations for endorsement were approved by the MNA Political Committee and Board of Directors, both comprised of elected nurse members.
MNA nurses will encourage fellow nurses and the public to elect endorsed candidates in 2024 through phone- and text-banking, door-knocking, digital advertisements and more.
Additional information on the MNA endorsement process and on endorsed candidates can be found at nursescarenursesvote.com.