Saturday, March 19, 2011


"For myself, the level of outrage is greater than my nervousness. " That was my answer to Judy Benson of The Day. She had asked if we were scared of retaliation for attempting to form a union. We had just taken the first step to moving our effort into the public arena. It was one thing to operate in the shadows, something altogether different to step into the light. Yet 16 of us did it that day, signing a statement of purpose and speaking with the press.

Were we scared? You bet we were, but we had taken all we could, we were outraged! So we stood proud, each of us relying on the other 15, because to stay in the shadows would doom our effort.

Do we face fear in nursing? Remember your first day in clinicals? Your first full assignment on your own? What about standing up to a doctor to advocate for your patient? Titrating multiple drips while a patient clung to life? Caring for a child, not being sure they would make it? Facing a psychotic or angry patient? Having to be the one to tell a family that their loved one has died?

We face fear and figure out a way to get through it, because there is no other acceptable option. We stand together now because again we have no other option.

It saddens me that fear is so often the weapon of choice for our administration. What does it say when someone is afraid to sign a union card? When someone is afraid to speak out in favor? To me it says that administration's tactics are working, but it also proves our point, we are not free to speak up for ourselves or our patients.

There is something about doing things together that gives you strength, that makes you brave to do things you would not be able to accomplish otherwise. As more of us come together all across the hospital and there is less and less fear, the things we can do are boundless.

1 comment:

Melissa said...
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