“The patient and the armed man starting arguing, which scared the nurses,” testified Registered Nurse Jonathan Lee earlier this week. “We were worried because mass shootings happen very often in this day and age.”
While the situation was eventually resolved, Lee said that “I have yet to see a written policy on workplace violence at Providence Hospital.”
Incidents like that are why Assistant Secretary of Labor David Michaels on Tuesday announced that the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration will be granting National Nurses United's petition for a standard to prevent workplace violence in healthcare settings. NNU petitioned for such a standard in July of 2016.
Lee joined other NNU members from across the country testifying Tuesday in Washington, D.C. at the OSHA public stakeholder meeting on workplace violence.
On today's labor calendar, columnist Harold Meyerson and ATU Local 689’s David Stephen join me and co-host Ed Smith on Your Rights at Work, today from 1-2 pm here on WPFW. Harold thinks Trump should nominate a robot for Secretary of Labor. Listen and call in with your questions about worker rights, starting at 1 pm.
For all the latest local labor calendar listings, go to dclabor.org and click on Calendar.
Here’s today's labor history:
On this date in 1876, Jack London was born. An American journalist, social activist and writer best-known for his novels "The Call of the Wild" and "White Fang," London was a passionate advocate of unionization, socialism, and the rights of workers. He wrote several powerful works dealing with these topics, such as his dystopian novel "The Iron Heel," his non-fiction exposé "The People of the Abyss," and "The War of the Classes."
In 1919, Seattle Mayor Ole Hanson ordered police to raid an open-air mass meeting of shipyard workers in an attempt to prevent a general strike. Workers were brutally beaten. The strike began the following month, with 60,000 workers walking out in solidarity with some 25,000 metal tradesmen .
And in 1942, President Roosevelt created the National War Labor Board to mediate labor disputes during World War II. Despite the fact that 12 million of the nation’s workers were women, the panel consisted entirely of men.
Today’s labor quote is by Jack London
Here's his classic definition of a scab—someone who would cross a picket line and take a striker's job:
"After God had finished the rattlesnake, the toad, the vampire, He had some awful substance left with which He made a scab. A scab is a two-legged animal with a cork-screw soul, a water-logged brain, a combination backbone of jelly and glue. Where others have hearts, he carries a tumor of rotten principles"