The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Nursing leader Bonnie Castillo, RN, to testify in support of Medicare for All at Senate hearing

Castillo, head of the country’s largest nursing union and professional association, will appear on Thursday, March 12, during a Senate Budget Committee hearing.


National Nurses United (NNU) Executive Director Bonnie Castillo, RN, will join other leaders in the Medicare for All movement to testify at a Senate Budget Committee hearing today, Thursday, May 12, to tell Congress why union nurses, based on their unique, frontline role in health care, support this desperately needed transformation of our failed health system. Castillo will join a panel at the hearing chaired by Medicare for All champion Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), to be held on International Nurses Day, the final day of National Nurses Week 2022.

"As the largest union of registered nurses in the country, we at NNU are very familiar with the fact that no real change is ever won without collective action," Castillo said ahead of the May 12 hearing. "Just as we have to fight together inside our workplaces for protections for our patients and for ourselves, we have to struggle in our communities and in the halls of Congress. In fact, we view it as an extension of our work to take care of our patients at the bedside."

Who: Bonnie Castillo, RN, National Nurses United Executive Director
What: Testimony to the Senate Budget Committee supporting Medicare for All
When: Today, Thursday, May 12, at 11 a.m. ET
Where: Washington, D.C., or streamed live online

Castillo will be available in D.C. to answer reporters' questions following today's hearing, as will NNU presidents Jean Ross, RN, and Zenei Triunfo-Cortez, RN.

For decades, NNU members have seen firsthand how money-driven health care systems worsen medical outcomes for patients and working conditions for nurses and other health care professionals. This historic trend of mismanagement has been exacerbated by the global pandemic, and Covid-19 has only heightened the obvious necessity of moving to a Medicare for All model.

"We are seeing unprecedented momentum for Medicare for All not just among nurses, but as part of a growing movement demanding health justice," Castillo said. "It is past time for the United States government to listen to nurses and listen to the people as we demand: Pass Medicare for All and guarantee health care as a human right."

National Nurses United, with close to 185,000 members in every state, is the largest union and professional association of registered nurses in US history.

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