Policy and political action

The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) is a non-partisan organization that pursues healthy public policy and promotes the full participation of Registered Nurses in shaping and delivering health services. RNAO Windsor-Essex Chapter fully supports Registered Nurses who are RNAO members running for elected public office. This is a long-standing policy priority for the organization.

Queen’s Park Day 2014

Event Summary

Windsor Essex Health Coalition Outreach Campaign

The Windsor Essex Health Coalition, in conjunction with the Ontario Health Coalition, is launching an outreach campaign here in the Windsor Essex Community directed at protecting our local community hospitals and health care services from privatization.

Campaign Kickoff is this evening, Wednesday October 23, 2013.

See the attached flyer for details:

Take Your MPP to Work Day

MPP Teresa Piruzza, Minister of Child and Youth Services Windsor West, recently participated in a Take Your MPP to Work Day organized by our chapter of RNAO.

This initiative encourages politicians to shadow nurses in order to better understand the role of nurses in Ontario’s health-care system. We would like to thank Teresa for her time and commitment to our health care.

Leamington Smoke Free By-Law

Presently, the Smoke Free Ontario Act prohibits smoking in all municipal buildings. Leamington Municipal Council is considering passing a by-law to prohibit smoking outdoors on some municipally owned properties.

RNAO Windsor Essex Chapter is advocating for the smoke free by-law and we encourage you to support this initiative.

Check out their website for more information

Attend the public meeting on this issue

Leamington Council Chambers- 111 Erie Street North on May 27, 2013 at 7 p.m

Participate in the survey

Healthy Children Grant

(NO) Time to Care Panel Discussion

The panel consisted of Josie Watson (University of Windsor Clinical Instructor), Shelley Smith (PSW), Katha Fortier (CAW National Director of Health Care) and Jennifer Johnston (RNAO Windsor Essex Chapter President, RN).

Allison Johnson (CBC Journalist) acted as moderator and did a phenomenal job encouraging questions and discussion.

Some of the issues discussed included:

-the devaluing of care in our current health care system

-how care is being downloaded to family members as a way to save healthcare dollars

-the “free” work that nurses perform when they don’t have time to take their breaks and lunches

-budgetary concerns re: health care

-government politics that affect health care

-care work as emotional labour

-caring as the factor that differentiates treatment from healing

-the hidden nature of care (as it often occurs in private areas to ensure confidentiality for those most vulnerable)

-state of the unions in the health care system

-the duty to care (nurses are not able to strike as they have accountabilities to their patients/clients and the CNO)

-it is challenging to measure or quantify care (as compared to task-oriented or technology-based care)

-how the acuity of patients have gone up but staffing levels have been decreased to the bare minimum

-little time for quality care and this causes moral distress to health care workers

-the ethical dilemmas that nurses face in regards to providing care vs. getting their tasks completed (e.g. paperwork)

-ALC crisis in Windsor and how this can be dealt with

-barriers to providing quality care and ways to remove these barriers

-plus there was much more…

About 40 people attended, some health care workers, a few physicians, many concerned citizens. Overall it was a very interactive and engaging event.

Save our Services Rally

On March 4, local chapter members joined over 200 citizens in participating in the “Save our Services” rally as part of the Ontario Day of Action for Health Care called by the Ontario Health Coalition. Chapter President Jennifer Johnston was asked to speak at the microphone on behalf of nurses. Interviews were also given to local radio stations. This was a very powerful event that brought to light the detrimental effects of budget cuts affecting our provincial healthcare system. This rally was in response to the Liberal government reneging on commitments to fund 48healthcare beds needed for our community. Since the rally, the government has made amends and is working with local hospitals to fund the beds promised!

Check out these pictures!

Windsor-Essex Chapter Endorsement of Bill C-400

Windsor-Essex RNAO endorses Bill C-400 for a National Housing Strategy to ensure that Canadians have secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing. In an effort to improve healthy public policy, our Chapter sent out letters to local MP’s Joe Comartin (NDP) and Jeff Watson (Conservative). Bill C-400 will be voted on February 13, 2013.

Bill aims for National Housing Strategy–The Windsor Star (copy & paste):

RNAO AGM Resolution 2013

Advocacy-Publicly Fund HPV Vaccine for All!

Your Windsor-Essex Chapter is advocating for equitable access to the HPV Vaccine for all Ontarians (including boys). Dana Boyd (RN with the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit and an active RNAO Windsor-Essex Chapter member) and your Executive Committee have developed this resolution which has been submitted to RNAO Home Office for consideration at the 2013 RNAO Annual General Meeting. To read the submitted resolution on this social justice issue, click on the PDF below.

We welcome your comments and encourage your feedback.

Windsor Hospital Task Force

The RNAO Windsor-Essex Chapter Executive met with the Windsor Hospital Task Force on Thursday Oct 11th, 2012 to provide input on the future of hospital services in Windsor-Essex. This was an excellent opportunity to voice our opinions, concerns and suggestions for this important initiative. To view the Task Forces’ Interim & Final Reports:

Opinion Matters – Chapter Name Survey Monkey Results

Thank you to everyone who voted, the results are in!

Based on the overwhelming results, your Chapter Executive will now work on your behalf to ensure that RNAO Board of Directors is made aware that an official change in name from Essex Chapter to Windsor-Essex Chapter fits with the sentiments of the general membership. We will keep you updated on the status of this initiative.

Update on Community Political Action Initiatives

Back on April 18, 2011 Essex Chapter Members Jennifer Johnston & Kelly Mertens-Lawrenson spoke publically at a local Amherstburg Town Council Meeting to support a motion to affect change in regards to decisions being made about nuclear energy. A media release was also issued and statements were given to local radio and newspaper reporters. The motion was passed and a request that it be forwarded to the other members of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, was upheld. We have hence heard that this same motion was also passed in other Ontario communities. Ultimately these actions are credited with influencing federal decisions in disallowing Bruce Power’s shipments of nuclear waste to be made on the Great Lakes. In follow-up communications, Brian Masse (MPP for Windsor West) has expressed,

“I want to say that Nurses can lead the way in changing the world toward a better place. We just need to have the vision, the support and the determination to do so. With your support the motion I made to stop the Plutonium Shipment through our waters was not only adopted in our own community but by other councils with the same willingness for a safer waterway both in Ontario and Canada but Internationally. The Essex Chapter of the RNAO helped that happen.”

The Essex Chapter is thrilled to have been an influential force in affecting positive changes for community health and is thankful for the support from the RNAO Home Office team.

Politics & Pancakes

Politics & Pancakes: A Pre-Election Dialogue on Health and Healthcare. Friday September 16, 2011 from 07:30-09:30am at the Other Place Catering. $10 Buffet Breakfast.

Confirmed Attendance To Date:

CBC News’ Susan Pedler as Moderator

RNAO President – David McNeil

Taras Natyshak – NDP Riding of Essex

Andrew McAvoy – NDP Riding of Windsor/Tecumseh

Helmi Charif – NDP Riding of Windsor West

Chad Durocher – Green Party Riding of Windsor West

Hon. Dwight Duncan – Minister of Finance and Liberal MPP for Windsor-Tecumseh

Teresa Piruzza – Liberal Riding of Windsor West

Ken Schmidt – Liberal Riding of Essex

The Windsor/Essex Chapter is presenting to the Amherstburg Town Council on Monday April 18th at 7pm. See the Media Release for details.

Speech to Amherstburg Town Council on Nuclear Energy Moratorium April 2011 – PR version.docx

RNAO Annual General Meeting Resolutions 2011

(Initial Submissions to RNAO Head Office)

What is a resolution?

A resolution is a statement with background research, on a healthcare or nursing related issue. Resolutions submitted by RNAO Chapters or Interest Groups, provide the RNAO organization with a direction to which they focus their energies and advocacy work. Resolutions are put forth at each RNAO AGM and voting members decide which resolutions are adopted for the coming year.

Your Windsor/Essex Chapter Executive has been hard at work developing 2 important resolutions for the upcoming RNAO Annual General Meeting April 8th, 2011.

-The 1st resolution is advocating for a Nursing Student Internship Program in Ont.

-The 2nd resolution is advocating for a review of the current process by which funds from the Nursing Education Initiative are distributed.