In February, federal nurses from around the country met for their annual AFGE Nurse Steering Committee meeting. This year's planning meeting highlighted the value of sharing the stories of nurses in the federal sector. Attendees also discussed the importance of official time in relation to patient care and safety standards, and the need for legislation to address patient-staff ratios in the public sector.
The committee also developed the theme for the September 2017 Federal Nurses Week celebration: Federal Nurses' Endless Service...Endless Care.
Through this theme, the committee looks to demonstrate the values shared by all of those in the nursing professions. AFGE represents those in the Indian Health Service, our nation's veterans, provide services to communities utilizing social programs, care for active-duty members of the military and their families, and serve inmates within the Bureau of Prisons system.
"We're excited to implement ideas and actions that further the work of nurses in the federal sector," said retiring AFGE District 8 National Vice President and outgoing Nurse Steering Committee Chair Jane Nygaard. "Our goal is to highlight the ways AFGE fights for safe staffing, fair scheduling and improved safety standards for public servants in the nursing profession."
The committee has begun planning celebratory events and legislative action. During Federal Nurses Week 2015 and 2016, the committee worked with lawmakers to introduce a bill that would improve patient-staff ratios in the public sector. Safe staffing levels is a key concern for nurses across federal agencies and the AFGE Nurse Steering Committee plans to pick up the fight again this year.
Learn more about Federal Nurses Week and the AFGE Nurse Steering Committee at www.afge.org/nursesteeringcommittee.