This award recognizes an RN who initiates and partakes in political action that benefits the health of individuals, clients, or profiles or positively positions nursing.
Angela Cooper Brathwaite says she is internally motivated to help bring about change to the lives of Ontarians. Currently a policy and political action representative for RNAO’s Durham Northumberland chapter and the Nursing Research Interest Group, Cooper Brathwaite – who is also a former RNAO board member – organized a Take Your MPP to Work breakfast in 2012 that was attended by five political leaders and over 30 nurses.
In concert with colleagues, she has corresponded with decision-makers on topics ranging from sports injuries to cycling and pedestrian safety, and pushed for provincial legislation such as Bill 118, which bars drivers from using hand-held devices, and Bill 126, which bans people with a certain blood alcohol level from driving. Both bills were passed in 2009. The former chair of the Ontario Public Health Association’s Injury Prevention Workgroup says seeing changes such as these is rewarding. “That’s how you know you made a difference,” she says.