Policy and Political Action

Policy & Political Action

Now is the Time to Resume Investment in Registered Nurses

Help deliver a message to Ontario's premier about the need for more RN positions.

Background

The warning signs of a shortage of RN jobs are glaring:

  • Too many RNs continue to experience excessive workload.
  • Job openings have dried up as RN employment has stagnated. This particularly impacts new graduate RNs, 12.9 per cent of whom were unemployed in 2012 and seeking nursing employment. A further 4.1 per cent were working outside of nursing and seeking nursing employment. Of those with nursing employment, only 61 per cent had full-time employment. This is worrisome because our new grads are very mobile, and once they move away, we know that it is very difficult to bring them back.
  • Almost 6,000 Ontario RNs are working in nursing outside of Ontario, and over 3,000 of those are working in the U.S. And that doesn’t count all the out-of-province Ontario RNs who have let their Ontario registrations lapse.

It thus comes as no surprise to learn that Ontario’s nurse-to-population ratio lags behind the rest of the country by 15.7 per cent. As of 2012, Ontario has 6.99 RNs/1,000 population, while the rest of the country has 8.3/1,000. It would take 17,588 more RNs for Ontario to catch up to the rest of Canada.

In his fall 2013 economic statement, Finance Minister Charles Sousa introduced a plan for jobs and growth. Since RNs were the first to bear the brunt of government spending restraint after the 2008 fall economic statement, it is fair for RNs to ask that the government put priority on restoring RN employment.

What can you do?

Send the following action alert to Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne. Copies will also be sent to the Minister of Health, the opposition leaders, and the opposition health critics.

You can edit the letter to deliver your own message.

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