FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, May 10, 2023
Media Contact: Aaron Pelo, firstname.lastname@example.org | 734.355.2741
Michigan AFL-CIO Calls for Passage of the Safe Patient Care Act to Support Nurses, Make Hospitals Safer
LANSING, Mich. – Today, in recognition of National Nurses Week, the Michigan AFL-CIO is calling for the passage of the Safe Patient Care Act, which will make a number of reforms to improve working conditions for nurses and ensure safe staffing levels for patients. The bills will be formally announced at a press conference with legislators and nurses in Lansing on Thursday, May 11th.
“This Nurses Week, it’s time to give our frontline heroes the dignity and respect they deserve,” said Michigan AFL-CIO President Ron BIEBER. “Nurses are telling us loud and clear that their working conditions are taking a heavy toll on them and their patients. We need our elected officials to take bold action to save patients’ lives instead of letting hospital CEOs continue to rake in millions of dollars. We need to prioritize retaining RNs and ensuring they can provide the best possible patient care. That is why the Michigan AFL-CIO is calling for the swift passage of the Safe Patient Care Act.”
The three-part Safe Patient Care Act would:
Set safe limits on the number of patients each nurse can be assigned;
Curb excessive mandatory nurse overtime;
Require hospitals to disclose their actual RN staffing.
“Healthcare is in crisis because of years of hospital understaffing. Every year, the situation gets worse. We have reached the point now where almost 40% of current nurses say that they are planning to leave within the next year,” said Jamie BROWN, a critical care nurse and president of the Michigan Nurses Association. “Hospital executives have failed to fix the problem for over a decade. The only way to keep patients safe is through meaningful action that will hold corporate executives accountable. We need patients to be put before profits.”
The Michigan AFL-CIO, Michigan’s largest labor organization, is a federation representing forty different labor organizations, eighteen different central labor councils, and eight constituency groups representing over 1 million union members and their families.