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Leaders must also know when it’s time for a new person to take the helm. To keep new blood flowing through the labor movement, older leaders have to make room for their successors, RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United, said. “You have to get out of the way. You can’t just talk about it,” she said. “If you’re a leader, a strong leader, you step down and open that up to someone you believe reflects where this union needs to be.”
National Nurses United may be proof that unions are not all on their way out: Some are very much alive, although they may look a little bit different than they used to. “Nurses United is among the most innovative and bold of U.S. unions,” said Harley Shaiken, a labor expert at Berkeley. “They’ve emerged as a powerful voice in defense of people who receive health care treatment.”
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When it comes to health care, it's easy to get into a debate for or against Obamacare. But we nurses see the world through a different lens: our patients. Good health care is a fundamental resource that keeps America's big engine running. Taxes should help pay for our healthcare. It works for seniors, it works for Congress members, and it will work for all of us.