“When we raise our serious concerns for others, it is important those in power take notice” – Open Letter To Scott Morrison

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The Australian College of Mental Health Nurses (ACMHN) is inviting all nurses and midwives to join them in calling for Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Federal MPs to evacuate over 85 children and their families from Nauru and Manus Island. 

NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association (NSWNMA) General Secretary, Brett Holmes, has shown support for this campaign by writing an open letter to Scott Morrison from nurses and midwives who support the rights of those seeking asylum on our shores. Support Brett by adding your name to the letter below.

Dear Prime Minister,

Nurses and midwives believe one of the highest priorities in society should be access to quality health care.

We seek to eliminate disparities in nursing and health care, especially among population groups in society that are considered most vulnerable, and work to reduce the adverse effects that power imbalances and prejudicial attitudes and practices have on social and institutional justice. We believe in the just and humane provision and delivery of nursing and health care.

As practicing nurses and midwives, we have a duty to advocate for policies and legislation that promote social justice. The Code of Ethics for Midwives states: “Nurses, individually and collectively, encourage professional and public participation in shaping social policies and institutions; advocate for policies and legislation that promote social justice…”

For too long, successive prime ministers and governments have continued to show heartlessness to vulnerable people seeking refuge in Australia by neglecting basic human rights and deliberately using harsh, divisive language to dehumanise the many families on Nauru and Manus Island.

I must emphasise that seeking refuge is NOT illegal. To seek refuge is a fundamental human right.

Nurses and midwives are some of the most caring individuals in the community – and the most trusted. When we raise our serious concerns for others, it is important we are not dismissed and those in power take notice. The open Letter to Prime Minister Scott Morrison by Adjunct Associate Professor Kim Ryan (CEO of Australian College of Mental Health Nurses) sums it up well:

As nurses, we hold a specific societal responsibility to advocate for the fair and compassionate treatment of people who are at risk and in need of health care, including those who are enduring mental health distress and despair. As the largest clinical health workforce in Australia, our collective voice should be united and strong on the principles that underlie our profession.

The NSWNMA holds strong values around social justice and human rights and believes in a fair, just and equitable society for all people. Prime Minister, I implore you to immediately end the injustice by bringing all the families held on Nauru and Manus Island to Australia. How can we continue to call Australia ‘the lucky country’ if we deny this opportunity to those most in need?

Sincerely,
Brett Holmes
General Secretary
NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association

Show the Prime Minister how loud nurses and midwives can be by adding your name to the letter below. 

 

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