NEW YORK NURSE: January 2013
By Patricia DiLillo, RN
As nurses, we all know how critical doing a good assessment is to helping our patients recover.
It’s a skill you never lose. And it’s a skill we can apply to our union, too.
If we haven’t met, I’m Patricia DiLillo, RN. I started out as an O/B nurse back in 1987.
This is my first column as NYSNA president. And I wanted to use it to share with you my assessment of NYSNA – the job we have to do, the obstacles in our way, and how I think we can succeed.
We’ve got a lot of work to do in 2013:
None of these jobs are easy. In fact, they are all incredibly hard.
People will oppose us: Some hospital administrators. Anti-union politicians.
And we have some internal obstacles, too. Many good members were fed up with the old NYSNA – and it’s hard to blame them.
We can’t outspend the fat cats who oppose us. And we’re not going to convince every member right away that things have changed inside NYSNA.
But we’re only going to win by mobilizing our greatest force – thousands of frontline nurses, speaking with one strong, united voice.
That’s how we will win safe staffing and good contracts. And that’s how we will get more and more members involved in our union.
If we’re going to get the job done, every member has a role to play.
Some jobs are big. Some are small. But all are important.
Imagine how much stronger NYSNA would be if we recruited 500 new leaders.
Imagine how much stronger we would be if on every unit, and every shift, nurses elected at least one nurse to represent our union.
We need to get hundreds more nurses to help lead NYSNA – to take on supervisors who don’t respect our practice. To help defend members. And to lead the way to mobilize for safe staffing on our units and in Albany.
It’s going to take a serious training and organizing program. And it will require nurses like you to step up and do more.
But we need every nurse to do their part. Talk to your Local Bargaining Unit leaders or your NYSNA rep. Tell them you’re ready to be a part of the new NYSNA.
Together we will meet the challenges and help build back a better New York.