Member Blog (Page 5)

From the MNA Board of Directors:

The MNA Board of Directors is hopeful it can increase funding in the following areas if members approve the dues structure change. While we would have to still determine exact amounts, the Board is committed to using the extra funding in the following ways:

1. Increase resources that can be used towards achieving safe staffing
2. Additional funds to be dedicated to the strike fund
3. Expand member resources related to defense of nurse’s legal and contractual rights whether through an arbitration or
administrative process
4 Establish a member release time budget for nurses interested in helping build the union by participating in various union campaigns, including contract, organizing, legislative, and electoral, which would allow them to do so without being economically impacted
… Read more about: Yes to Invest  »

By Stefanie Asante-Totimeh, RN

Government Affairs Commissioner


As nurses, we are advocates and leaders who continually work on behalf of our patients and community. We are also involved in decisions that affect our workplace and communities when we partake actively in our union and our workplace.

The professional nursing population provides a unique perspective. We celebrate our differences, and, in turn, we are at the forefront of providing patient-centered care and decisions. How then does political awareness come into play with nursing?

Political awareness as a nurse does not necessarily mean being affiliated with a political party.
… Read more about: Nursing and Political Awareness  »

By Kathleen Malecki, RN

MNA Member


Healthcare reform coalition-building has hit a critical mass milestone in the work of creating a nationwide Healthcare for All (Medicare for All) movement, possibly with an international, intersectional component.  “Healthcare-NOW” is ready to launch an army of organized volunteers to challenge the medical-industrial complex across the USA and globally.


This is the long-awaited tipping point. It is time for us to get involved and volunteer to make this happen via deep one-on-one conversations, which are held face-to-face wherever we are with the goal to listen more than talk.
… Read more about: HEALTHCARE NOW CONFERENCE 2018  »


By Julie Anderson, RN

GAC Commissioner

As nurses, we nurture, heal, care, and advocate—unless we’re talking about ourselves. We continually ignore the warnings of “put your own oxygen mask on before you apply someone else’s.”  We run trauma rooms while barely breaking a sweat. We face hostile patients, family, and coworkers and calmly de-escalate, redirect, and reassure everyone with a smile on our faces.  Still, what is the cost of continually putting others’ needs before your own?  Oftentimes going from one crisis to another barely able to take a deep breath, let alone debrief on what just happened and how it will affect us later on.
… Read more about: Nurses Need Care Too  »

By Sadie Cross, RN

Mercy Hospital, Moose Lake

Student, Bemidji State University

As a baccalaureate student from Bemidji State University and an MNA member, I participated in the April 10 Student Nurses Day on the Hill as a listener, learner, critic, and advocate.

I must admit I was initially disappointed when the March MNA Nurses Day on the Hill was canceled due to weather, but now I can say I’m thankful my first experience at an MNA event was with other students.

I felt the morning session was a good introduction to MNA and the benefits of union membership and advocating for the nursing profession, which many nursing students may not be very familiar with.
… Read more about: Student Day on the Hill reignites passion to loosen grip of ignorance and inequality  »

By Diane Mclaughlin

MNA Member, Retired and GAC Commissioner


I’m an active MNA member and a returning Governmental Affairs Commissioner. I assisted in the screening of gubernatorial candidates last October that resulted in the endorsement of state Rep. Erin Murphy (DFL-St. Paul). So, participation in the political realm is not new to me.


After being vocal at my precinct caucus and presenting numerous resolutions in front of my area neighbors, I was granted the opportunity to represent the caucus at the senate district convention. Conventions can be rowdy, competitive, and vibrant interactions of people.
… Read more about: Caucusing for Erin Murphy  »

(Note:  Two bills to enter Minnesota in the National Nurse Licensure Compact have been introduced in the Legislature.  This would allow nurses from other states to practice in Minnesota without a Minnesota nurse license.  The following is from testimony given Tuesday, March 27 in the Minnesota House Health and Human Services Reform Committee.)


My name is Sharon Carlson. I am a bedside nurse that works in the perioperative care center at Abbott Northwestern hospital. Perioperative careis the care that is given before, during and after surgery. As well as being a staff nurse I have the privilege of being a charge nurse in our Pre-Op, PACU, day surgery and cardiovascular recovery areas.
… Read more about: A Nurse Speaks Out Against the National Nurse Compact  »

By Kathleen Malecki

MNA Member


During the 2016 MNA Convention, a resolution regarding gun violence prevention was updated and passed by the House of Delegates. In response to that resolution, GAC members joined Protect Minnesota to lobby at the legislature to defeat four really terrible bills and we were successful. This fall Protect Minnesota together with the School of Public Health at the U of M, Minnesota Public Health Association and the Nobel Peace Prize Forum put on a conference on gun violence. The Board voted to help sponsor the conference and three GAC members attended.

I am at a loss to summarize all the useful information absorbed at this two-day conference.
… Read more about: Public Health Conference on Gun Violence Protection-pt 3  »

By Diane McLaughlin, RN

MNA Member, Retired


We live in a “toxic” (i.e. sick) society, according to Dr. Chris Johnson, MD, Emergency Physician with Allina Health Minneapolis.  Johnson spoke this fall Protect Minnesota and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health put on the Public Health Conference on Gun Violence Protection.  The Minnesota Association Board of Directors helped sponsor the event, and three MNA members of the Governmental Affairs Commission attended.

Johnson said we can see the evidence of a toxic society by: gun violence, including domestic and mass shootings; child poverty (1 in 5 children live in poverty); teen pregnancy rates; opioid deaths and drug abuse as 80 percent of the world’s supply comes to the US; and a lack of social mobility.
… Read more about: From the Public Health Conference on Gun Violence Protection  »

nurse protest

By Diane Scott

MNA Member


It was a beautiful fall day. The oak trees were breathtaking. That was outside… Inside the hospital, chaos ensued. We were short staffed. Yep, plain-old short-staffing, once again.

The charge nurse asked the nurses working their eight-hour day shifts to stay and also work the evening shift. All five of these nurses said no. They were too tired, and, in their professional judgment, it would be unsafe for their patients. Then, the nurse manager approached one of those nurses and said, “you have to stay or I am going to report you for abandoning your patients.” The nurse said, “but, but…,” put her head down, got teary-eyed, and called home to tell her kids she would be home about midnight.
… Read more about: BOOM! (Bunch of Outrageous Malarkey)  »