Unionized States of America: Now it's the nurses

A key goal behind efforts to nationalize nurses' unions into one all encompassing union is the desire to increase their power to lobby for the interests of nurses and push for health care reform (i.e., more nurses, higher pay, fewer hours).

This may be all well and good. Personally, I think nurses probably are underpaid. I have seen them do stellar work. But this is a sign that one more part of our economy is being unionized for political purposes. When one reads that increased lobbying power is a goal, that is the sign that government is taking over our economy, sector by sector (because one doesn't really lobby private businesses or non-profits). Unions see the handwriting on the wall-and will boost their lobbying power and spending on political campaigns.

Union dues being raised for all members is a sign that war chests are being built for the years ahead. Once government takes over health care-in one form or another, nurses will be ready to support politicians who will increase their portion of the pie (taxpayers' dollars, that is).

Robert Weisman writing in the Boston Globe:

Unionized nurses in Massachusetts are moving toward affiliating with their counterparts in California and more than 20 other states to create the largest nurses union in US history, a 150,000-member powerhouse that would lobby lawmakers for higher staffing levels and an overhaul of the nation's health care system.

The move could give the state's nurses more bargaining power with hospitals and aid organizing efforts at nonunion health care providers such as Massachusetts General Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. But it is being opposed by some nurses at Brigham and Women's Hospital and elsewhere who do not want to pay the added dues needed to finance the organization.

Local backers of the new alliance, National Nurses United, contend it would help patients by pushing for state laws mandating more nurses on duty. "This is an opportunity for nurses to work together to be more effective in safeguarding patients,'' said Donna Kelly-Williams, a Cambridge Hospital nurse who took over this month as president of the 23,000-member Massachusetts Nurses Association, which represents the vast majority of nurses at Massachusetts hospitals.

The reason for the consolidation of the individual nurses unions? When industry consolidates-say the auto industry-it makes more sense for workers to form one union. Health care is no exception. Unions can foresee the single-payor model of health care reform transforming health care in America-by placing it under federal control.

A key goal behind efforts to nationalize nurses' unions into one all encompassing union is the desire to increase their power to lobby for the interests of nurses and push for health care reform (i.e., more nurses, higher pay, fewer hours).

This may be all well and good. Personally, I think nurses probably are underpaid. I have seen them do stellar work. But this is a sign that one more part of our economy is being unionized for political purposes. When one reads that increased lobbying power is a goal, that is the sign that government is taking over our economy, sector by sector (because one doesn't really lobby private businesses or non-profits). Unions see the handwriting on the wall-and will boost their lobbying power and spending on political campaigns.

Union dues being raised for all members is a sign that war chests are being built for the years ahead. Once government takes over health care-in one form or another, nurses will be ready to support politicians who will increase their portion of the pie (taxpayers' dollars, that is).

Robert Weisman writing in the Boston Globe:

Unionized nurses in Massachusetts are moving toward affiliating with their counterparts in California and more than 20 other states to create the largest nurses union in US history, a 150,000-member powerhouse that would lobby lawmakers for higher staffing levels and an overhaul of the nation's health care system.

The move could give the state's nurses more bargaining power with hospitals and aid organizing efforts at nonunion health care providers such as Massachusetts General Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. But it is being opposed by some nurses at Brigham and Women's Hospital and elsewhere who do not want to pay the added dues needed to finance the organization.

Local backers of the new alliance, National Nurses United, contend it would help patients by pushing for state laws mandating more nurses on duty. "This is an opportunity for nurses to work together to be more effective in safeguarding patients,'' said Donna Kelly-Williams, a Cambridge Hospital nurse who took over this month as president of the 23,000-member Massachusetts Nurses Association, which represents the vast majority of nurses at Massachusetts hospitals.

The reason for the consolidation of the individual nurses unions? When industry consolidates-say the auto industry-it makes more sense for workers to form one union. Health care is no exception. Unions can foresee the single-payor model of health care reform transforming health care in America-by placing it under federal control.