TORONTO, Nov. 1, 2012 /CNW/ - The Ontario Nurses' Association (ONA) kicked off its 40th anniversary celebrations today by revealing a new banner marking the milestone birthday.
ONA President Linda Haslam-Stroud, RN, was joined by the board of directors and staff today at the union's Grenville Street main office in Toronto (photos are downloadable at http://www.ona.org/news_details/ONA_40.html).
Celebrations will continue later this month as 1,000 registered nurses and allied health professionals gather in Toronto for ONA's Biennial Convention.
"The Ontario Nurses' Association has been the leading voice of front-line registered nurses and allied health professionals working in this province since 1973," notes Haslam-Stroud. "We are celebrating this milestone anniversary with the slogan, 'A Vibrant Profession. A Powerful Union,' because that is the essence of nurses and the essence of ONA."
ONA has celebrated many significant victories for the profession of nursing during its history, all with a view to improving patient care. Research has clearly shown the link between good working conditions for RNs and health professionals and positive patient outcomes.
"We become nurses because we care deeply about patient care," she says. "We are the health professionals who are on the front lines, advocating for patients and ensuring the most positive health outcomes possible for them. ONA, in turn, does the same for its members. This union has done a great deal during the past four decades to ensure that our nurses have a quality work life and the respect they deserve so that they, in turn, can provide high-quality, safe health care."
Among ONA's milestones:
- The achievement of a "Professional Responsibility Clause" that gives nurses the ability to practice nursing at a high standard, providing a process for addressing unsafe staffing levels insufficient to provide safe care;
- New legislation to address the high rates of violence in the workplace, spurred by the workplace murder of ONA member Lori Dupont, RN;
- Greater workplace safety through the provision of safety-engineered "sharps" to prevent needlestick injuries and proper protective equipment (such as N95 respirators) during outbreaks such as SARS;
- Successful advocacy campaigns such as the "Value the Invaluable" ad campaign to raise the profile of the province's dedicated registered nurses and allied health professionals and the "Not Enough Nurses" campaigns that raised awareness of the serious nursing shortage.
Highlights of ONA's 40 years are available on our website (www.ona.org/milestones).
"While challenges remain, I have no doubt that ONA will continue to be at the forefront, advocating for this province's invaluable registered nurses and allied health professionals and the patients, residents and clients we serve," says Haslam-Stroud.
ONA is the union representing 59,000 registered nurses and allied health professionals as well as more than 13,000 nursing student affiliates providing care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health, the community, clinics and industry.
Image with caption: "The Ontario Nurses' Association marked the start of its 40th anniversary celebrations today by unveiling a new banner on its Grenville Street office in Toronto (CNW Group/Ontario Nurses' Association)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121101_C4202_PHOTO_EN_20044.jpg
SOURCE: Ontario Nurses' Association
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