MNA Statement on Budget Forecast

1 Dec

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: John Nemo, 651-414-2863 or john.nemo@mnnurses.org

ST. PAUL (December 1, 2011) – Responding to today’s state budget forecast, the Minnesota Nurses Association issued the following statement:

“Plenty of GOP leaders are putting a positive spin on today’s news of a budget surplus. However, we’d like to point out a few of the items you aren’t likely to hear them talking about:

  • You won’t hear GOP leadership talking about the billion-dollar cost of using tobacco bonds to balance the budget, which they insisted upon.
  • You won’t hear GOP leadership talking about the huge increases in property taxes we’re seeing across the state of Minnesota.
  • You won’t hear GOP leadership talking about how they chose to shut down our state government so they could protect millionaires from paying their fair share in income taxes.
  • Most important to nurses, you won’t hear GOP leadership talking about the thousands of Minnesota residents – and, as a consequence, their children – that they kicked off of healthcare.

A report released this week showed Minnesota is the only state in the country to see a significant rise in the number of uninsured children in recent years. There are now more than 84,000 children in Minnesota without health insurance. Thanks to the GOP cutting healthcare for Minnesota parents, many of our children now must suffer without medical attention as well.

The budget forecast announced today does contain some good news, but it comes at a huge cost to middle class Minnesota families. Saying that this forecast has left us with a surplus is the same as having a positive balance in your checkbook while also carrying huge balances on your credit cards. We still owe a significant debt to our children, our students, our seniors and the entire middle class. And we cannot forget that.”

4 Responses to “MNA Statement on Budget Forecast”

  1. David Stuart, RRT-NPS December 5, 2011 at 1:57 am #

    Hold on just a minute! I have worked in MN, a great for years and you believe all your financial and health problems are caused by the MN GOP? What about the Federal DEMS?!!
    I don’t have any health insurance and it’s not available nor affordable for me. I have practiced in my field for over 30 years. But, I can’t “blame the State for that”. I can put a major portion of the blame on the US congress and the “change” our president has promoted. Hope he enjoyed his tax-payer vacations!!

  2. Heidi December 8, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    I agree. MNA appears to be very one-sided on all of these issues. I’ve just recently rejoined MNA after letting my membership go for a few years and I don’t like the direction it appears they have taken in that time. I’m very disappointed. These types of issues are extremely complicated and I don’t feel they can be entirely “blamed” on one political party or the other. Both parties have their rationale for voting the way they do, whether or not it’s rationale with which we agree. I’m sure I’m not alone in saying I would like to see MNA be professional enough to give both sides of the argument without their bias. Please let us as educated professionals decide how we want to interpret the information.

    • mnnurses December 8, 2011 at 10:25 am #

      Heidi and David – thanks for the honest, open feedback and passion in your comments! I know politics can be a very difficult/tricky terrain for unions and membership to navigate together. The best way I can explain why MNA takes the stands it does politically is by linking to this post from our Blog on the “How” and “Why” behind MNA’s political actions: http://mnablog.com/2010/10/06/nursesandpolitics/

      Also I should note that all our political direction/leadership/decision-making come from the elected MNA Nurse leaders and Board of Directors. With 20,000 members we realize we’ll never all agree on political statements/opinions/etc., but certainly we want everyone’s voice heard – so thank you for sharing yours!

  3. Heidi December 8, 2011 at 11:21 am #

    I understand, however I don’t think we as an organization need to go as far as playing the “blame game.” I’m fine with MNA taking a side as long as both sides are presented factually and fairly and MNA explains why they have made the decision they have. This approach seems more professional to me.

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