Nurses Unions Merge to Form the Largest Ever Labor Group for Medical Professionals
Posted Dec 07 2009 4:35pm
Along with merging the 3 unions, the group also states they are looking to help set up and organize additional members throughout the US. Nurses are who we see more than our doctors and are the day to day lifeline we have in the hospital by all means. We need good care and good nurses everywhere. When it comes to innovation and ideas for better care, ask a nurse!
Part of the mission of the nurses is bring some standardization to patient care and now they will have a stronger voice in Congress as well. California and Massachusetts somewhat lead the way as far as numbers of current members and the California Nurses Association is by far the largest and has had the ability to be heard perhaps more so than some of the members of the other unions. BD
HOENIX (Reuters) - Three nurses unions merged on Monday to form the largest-ever labor organization for U.S. medical professionals, which is expected to wield greater clout in collective bargaining and the national healthcare debate.
Organizers said the new 150,000-member National Nurses United, comprising union locals from Maine to Hawaii, would use its strength to fight for patients' rights, higher healthcare standards and better working conditions for nurses.
Deborah Burger, president elect of the NNU and head of its largest constituent union, the California Nurses Association, called the merger a big step.
"It's a huge day ... not only for the nursing profession, but also for our patients," she said. "We will be able to go to the halls of Congress and advocate for stronger patient protection, for better healthcare."
Aside from a bigger voice in the healthcare debate, the merger is expected to give nurses greater leverage in collective bargaining after decades of growth in national hospital chains that have largely resisted union organizing. The merger, approved unanimously by delegates at a founding convention in Phoenix, unifies the CNA, which has 83,000 members in California and several other states; the United American Nurses, with 45,000 members, mostly in the Midwest, and the 22,000-member Massachusetts Nurses Association.