President of the Dominica Nurses Association (DNA), Mignon Rolle- Shillingford, has said that nurses have the right to request increased salaries and better working conditions.
She was speaking on DBS Talking Point Programme on Tuesday as the country observed International Nurses Day.
“A lot of times some people believe that because nurses are nurses that they should not ask for money, they shouldn’t ask for remuneration, an honest pay for honest work. This is not correct,” she said. “Even if we love and we give ourselves, we still need to be remunerated properly and it is not wrong for us to ask for increasing salaries and maybe better working conditions in some areas.”
According to her, no nurse should be made to feel less or wicked because they are asking for increased pay.
Meantime, Rolle-Shillingford thanked the government of Dominica, on behalf of the DNA, for what she said is the privilege to serve and to lead in many ways.
“We thank you the citizens for the trust and confidence with which you have let us enter your private and public space so we can nurse you to good health and life,” the DNA president stated, adding, “but there is so much we can do if you listen to our voices, all our voices.”
She went on to say, “We cannot nurse the world to health when its governments ignore us, nor can we nurse the world to health when the world abuses us” and highlighted the need for the rights and a positive practice environment to enable nurses to achieve universal health coverage and sustainable development goals.
She said nurses’ response to the Covid-19 pandemic has revealed that “better than we ourselves could ever verbally convince you, that no nursing care is too daunting for us to deliver, and no place is too far to deliver that care.”
Rolle- Shillingford made it clear that no one is denied nurses care based on race, religious belief, political affiliation, social class or infection status.