Mark Augarten​​​​​​​: Now what?

  • Suzanne Love, a nurse at Bay State Franklin Medical Center’s ER, Amy Wolpin, a retired teacher, and Patty Healey, a recently retired staff nurse, talk to Henry Kowalski about voting for Question 1 at Jackson Street School, Nov. 6, 2018. STAFF PHOTO/CAROL LOLLIS

Published: 11/8/2018 8:21:24 AM
Now what? 

The opponents of ballot Question 1 made a strong case, and voters heeded it. Opponents argued that a ballot question is not the proper forum to mandate nurse to patient ratios in hospitals, and the proposition as written was excessively rigid.

The proponents, despite losing, have not only raised an important and valid issue, but have now brought it widely and forcefully before the public. I received a great deal of literature and read many letters and columns telling me why this ballot question as written was not a wise solution to the problem.

So far I have not received, nor have I seen anything, from hospital administrators, managers, or state policy makers proposing a better solution. By asking us to reject the solution proposed by the nurse’s union, it is now up to those having managerial, political and policy responsibility to offer better alternatives, in cooperation with representatives of hardworking and dedicated bedside nurses.

This issue should not and must not go away. 

Mark Augarten

Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

115 Conz Street
Northampton, MA 01061


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