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Wisconsin's Nurses and Health Professionals Endorse Mary Burke for Governor

For Immediate Release                                                                     Contact:  Candice Owley

May 6, 2014                                                                                                        Cell: 414-899-7070

Wisconsin's Nurses and Health Professionals Endorse Mary Burke for Governor

Milwaukee, Wis. – On this National Nurses’ Day, the Wisconsin Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals (WFNHP) is proud to announce its endorsement of Mary Burke for Governor. Ms. Burke has a strong commitment to making quality health care available to all Wisconsinites and is clearly on the side of working families, especially working women. “Nurses understand that the policies set by the Governor of the state directly impact the health care of our citizens and the quality of working conditions for all frontline care givers,” stated WFNHP President Candice Owley, RN.

Owley went on to say, “Mary Burke will put the health care of our community before politics and corporate profits.” Burke knows it was wrong for Governor Walker to reject billions in badly needed federal dollars, which would have expanded the state Medicaid ‘BadgerCare’ program and provided coverage to an estimated 84,700 residents. Walker’s refusal to take the federal money was based only on politics; his decision not only put the health of the community at risk, but also harmed the state’s hospitals, especially those that provide critical access and care for the poor and uninsured. “Mary Burke will reverse Walker’s dangerous decision and will immediately move to accept the federal Medicaid funds that will help tens of thousands of Wisconsinites, and provide needed funding for responsible community hospitals,” stated Owley.

Burke will also help bring high insurance costs under control by standing up to the insurance companies that rake in excessive profits at the expense of hard working families.

Mary Burke understands that good health care services are linked to quality working conditions for frontline staff, including safe work loads, an environment free from bullying and violence, and an end to the dangerous practice of forced overtime which puts patients in great jeopardy. WFNHP knows that Burke will support legislation on these critical patient safety policies.

Mary Burke also knows that our state cannot move forward unless working people are able to earn their way out of poverty. Burke is unwavering in her support for increasing the state minimum wage, enforcing equal pay laws that guarantee equal pay for equal work, and protecting family medical leave laws that ensure nobody has to choose between caring for their family or keeping their job.

Burke strongly supports the rights of public and private sector employees to form unions and bargain contracts with their employers, understanding the value of the collective bargaining process rather than vilifying it. Burke also believes that workers who benefit from contracts and union representation should be required to pay their fair share of those costs and would oppose any law to change those requirements.

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Wisconsin FNHP is a division of AFT Healthcare, which represents more than 65,000 nurses
and other healthcare professionals.

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