Nurses endorse Patrick Gage for Hennepin County Commissioner ahead of primary


Contact: Sam Fettig
(c) 612-741-0662
Lauren Bloomquist
(c) 651-376-9709

Nurses will work with elected commissioner to improve staff retention and patient care at public hospital  

(St. Paul) – April 24, 2024 – Nurses of the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) today announced their endorsement of Patrick Gage for Hennepin County Commissioner in District 6 ahead of Tuesday’s primary election. Through a screening and endorsement process led by MNA nurses who live and work in Hennepin County, Gage stood out to nurses for his commitment to nurse and patient priorities, his strong support of labor rights, and his willingness to listen to and work with nurses to improve conditions in our hospitals.

“Patrick has consistently shown up for nurses advocating at the county, and his support for better nurse staffing levels reflects his understanding of crucial healthcare issues,” said Jeremy Olson-Ehlert, RN, MNA Co-Chair at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC).

“Gage has a hugely diverse amount of experience from his years of public service, and he showed up for nurses on the picket line,” said Elizabeth Songalia, RN at HCMC.

In recent months, HCMC nurses have urged the Hennepin County Board to take action to restore trust, transparency, and accountability at the public institution. Nurses and other HCMC workers are concerned that low staffing levels, high levels of workplace violence, and lack of accessible healthcare for workers and patients will drive more workers from the bedside, leaving Hennepin patients and the community underserved. The person elected to fill the vacancy in District 6 will play a critical role in the work to protect this vital resource for public health.

MNA nurses are eager to work with Gage to improve staff retention and staffing levels to protect patient care, and to hold hospital executives accountable to patients and the public. To support MNA-endorsed candidates, nurses will encourage fellow members and the voting public to support those who are committed to putting patient needs before corporate greed in our hospitals. Nurse efforts to elect endorsed candidates include phone- and text-banking, door-knocking, digital advertisements and more.

MNA endorsement recommendations are based on candidate questionnaires and interviews conducted by nurse members with candidates; these recommendations are then approved by the MNA Board of Directors, an elected body of nurse members. Additional information on the MNA endorsement process can be found at