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March 31, 2024

Recap of Queen’s Park Day and assembly of leaders meeting

QPD 2024

RNAO’s board of directors (BOD) and assembly of leaders brought the issues that matter most to nurses to Queen’s Park on Feb. 29 for the association’s 24th annual Queen’s Park Day. After a prep meeting held the evening of Feb. 28, members felt ready to discuss ways to address equity, diversity and inclusivity (EDI) in the nursing profession and health system at large.

Over a series of breakfast meetings, members met with their local MPPs, raising their concerns and proposing solutions to help end the nursing crisis by addressing systemic racism and discrimination in all its forms. In the afternoon, nurses gathered at Trinity College on the University of Toronto campus. They had the opportunity to hear a panel discussion about EDI in nursing and the health system featuring: John Edwards, secretary of Rainbow Nursing Interest Group (IG); Victoria Guido, chair of Indigenous Nurses and Allies IG; and Lori Zozzolotto, chair of Black Nurses Leading Change IG. RNAO also welcomed Health Minister Sylvia Jones, leader of the official opposition Marit Stiles, long-term care critic for the Ontario NDP Wayne Gates, leader of the Ontario Liberal Party Bonnie Crombie, health critic for the Ontario Liberal Party Adil Shamji, and leader of the Green Party of Ontario Mike Schreiner to speak and answer questions about nursing, health and health-care. Some of the questions raised related to EDI, fair compensation, safe consumption sites, staffing ratios and more – all important issues that RNAO and its members continue to speak out on. For a recap of the event, watch the archived livestream on RNAO’s YouTube channel and read the thread of posts on X (formerly Twitter).

The event concluded with an assembly meeting with RNAO’s BOD, chapter presidents, interest group chairs, policy and political action network (PPAN) officers and communications executive network officers (ENO) at Toronto’s Chelsea Hotel. RNAO President Dr. Claudette Holloway and CEO Dr. Doris Grinspun delivered their reports, members participated in a QPD recap session and members’ voices to provide updates on their groups’ activities. During a media training session, members had the opportunity to participate in mock interviews to become comfortable with speaking to reporters for print/online, radio and TV news stories, as well as how to engage with reporters and pitch story ideas. If you’re interested in learning more about media interviews, refer to RNAO’s Media Relations Toolkit on MyRNAO (login required).

Remember to speak out for nursing, health, and health-care as often you can to help mobilize change where it’s needed most. If you’re interested in attending future QPD events, keep an eye out for a call for nominations from RNAO’s home office to run for chapter president, IG chair, PPAN or communications ENO.