Legislative Policy (Page 2)

Peoples Summit

By Katie Gjertson

MNA Political Coordinator

This past June 9 – 11, more than 4,000 of my closest friends and strongest allies (nurses, community members, Bernie supporters, environmentalists, activists, and big-name speakers) got together to collaborate, plan, share ideas and strategies, and generally be inspired by one another. Here are my top ten favorite moments from the People’s Summit in Chicago that will maybe inspire more to come next year!

  1. Former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner. Wow! Nina Turner is my hero! Nina had several speaking opportunities on stage, but, hands-down, the highlight was her Sunday morning talk titled, “Wake-up for Justice.” Nina, in a dress and tennis shoes, worked the crowd, roaming up and down the aisles as she talked about the movement moment we are in while drawing connections to the American Revolution and the Civil Rights movement.
  2. … Read more about: Top Ten Highlights from the People’s Summit in Chicago  »

nurse protest

By Geri Katz

 MNA Healthcare Reform Specialist

In the lead-up to tomorrow’s June 8 election in the United Kingdom, the Labour Party has pledged to nurses of the National Health Service to:

Two things about this remarkable pledge are worth noting for MNA nurses:

  1. This is what political power looks like.
  2. In a single payer healthcare system, the government has the leverage to make reforms to standards of care and working conditions across the country.
  3. … Read more about: Nurses in UK on the Verge of National Staffing Legislation  »

by Rose Roach

MNA Executive Director

As an organization representing 21,000 healthcare professionals, the vast majority of whom are registered nurses, MNA has long advocated for reforms that make healthcare more affordable and accessible to patients who need it because the safety and care of patients is our number one priority. As part of that advocacy we have been calling for regulations that hold Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) accountable for public tax dollars they receive to provide coverage for those who need it most.

Yet with billions going to the HMOs every year to administer public programs, the public has no information about how much of that money is actually providing care to patients who rely on MinnesotaCare and Medical Assistance, and how much is going into CEO salaries, reserves, marketing and lobbying.
… Read more about: Make HMOs Accountable for their Public Funds  »

By Charlotte Zabawa RN

Retired Nurse and MNA Member

I am Charlotte Zabawa, and I am a retired registered nurse and a member of the Minnesota Nurses Association and a member of the SCVWA Indivisible. For many years, I’ve devoted my volunteer time to moving us closer to a humane healthcare system that cares for everyone when they need it, not just when they can afford it. I spent most of my career as a post-partum nurse, and I can tell you how desperately we need to fix our broken healthcare system.
… Read more about: The Time for Humane Healthcare for All is Now  »

By Katie Gjertson

MNA Political Coordinator

This June 9 – 11, several thousand progressive activists from across the country will gather in Chicago for the People’s Summit 2.0. It’s a multi-organizational, multi-racial, multi-issue conference, co-hosted by the National Nurses United. The event goals are to form a broad coalition committed to building a people’s movement united around social, racial, economic, and environmental justice.

MNA members are invited to attend, and those who haven’t been to an event like this before are the perfect candidate. These events feature high-powered speeches by progressive leaders that will leave participants fired up to get involved.
… Read more about: The People’s Summit 2.0  »

by Jon Tollefson

MNA Government Relations Specialist

A lot of people saw what was happening and which way the election was going, but they felt the political elite didn’t listen to them. And they were probably right. People tend to get into their own bubbles and stay there, echo chambers of agreement. That makes it hard to see and understand one another.

 

Minnesota’s nurses are diverse in terms of race, age, and certainly political beliefs. Many nurses likely continue to feel outrage and deep sadness at the results of the election while others celebrated a victory and a sense that, finally, they’ve been heard.
… Read more about: What an election  »

By Shannon Cunningham

Director of Governmental and Community Relations

It’d be great if we all could elect our own boss. And the boss’ boss. And the boss’ boss’ boss. A vote against is a vote to fire them. A yes vote is a vote to hire them. Most importantly, no vote at all signals that you just don’t care. Sound familiar? Maybe because we actually can do that now.

It’s why elections matter. Take Attorney General Laurie Swanson, for example. The Minnesota Nurses Association has had a longstanding great relationship with AG Swanson. We have worked with her extensively on issues, such as fair billing practices at hospitals and preventing a merger of Sanford Health and the University of Minnesota..
… Read more about: Politics & Contracts Go Together Like Peanut Butter and Jelly  »

By Barb Brady

MNA Communications Specialist

Amid all the frustration and chaos at the closing hours of the Minnesota Legislature this past weekend, there was one bright spot. MNA members from the Minnesota Security Hospital in St. Peter came to the Capitol to lobby for funding to increase safety at their hospital – and made a difference.

“It was quite the ride,” said Lori Olson, chair of the MNA State Employees Bargaining Unit. “We went to the Capitol and got seats on the floor. We let people know we need money, staff, and funding.”

Olson and other members began texting some legislators, explaining why the funding is needed.
… Read more about: State Nurses Show Their Influence  »

by Jon Tollefson

MNA Government Affairs Specialist

 

What a strange weekend! Most of it spent waiting for Senate DFLers and House Republicans to announce any agreements at all, whether on transportation, taxes, bonding, or the supplemental budget. At least the weather was nice, and the new Senate Office Building has comfortable hearing rooms and a lovely terrace overlooking the Capitol.

 

As often happens at the end of session, the last day was a frantic mix of private negotiations, quick floor sessions – and a lot of waiting around.

 

The House and Senate, as unfortunately has become usual, waited until the very last possible hour to finalize their agreements

 

Even then, they didn’t actually agree.
… Read more about: The Minnesota Mess  »

 

 

By Mathew J. Keller, RN JD

Regulatory and Policy Nursing Specialist

When patients are at risk, nurses are the first line of defense. But what happens when hospital leadership isn’t listening to its nurses? That’s the dilemma Clinical Nurse Specialist and 2015 MNA “Social Justice” Award winner Niki Gjere faced in reporting her concerns of unethical and dangerous research practices to Fairview-Riverside leaders (a site for recruitment of research subjects for the U’s psychiatric department) and University administrators, as detailed in Part I.

I believe this unassuming nurse leader is not only credible but courageous.
… Read more about: Nurse Whistleblower Stays the Course in the Face of Increasing Pressure—Part II  »