NYSNA is in the news…..But is this good news?

NYSNA I See You has obtained a copy of an article in Politico (an on line and print political news site) about  a separate political group, Democratic Socialists of America/NewYork (DSA) that is targeting NYSNA with the goal of changing our union into an organization more to their liking. 

According to the article, The labor branch of DSA adopted a strategy last year to gain entry into six labor organizations and ensure that they are adhering to the “militant” principles that the group felt had been diluted. POLITICO obtained a previously unreported, 37-page memo laying out a follow-up plan that identified the 6 unions to target.

This same article goes on to detail what DSA sees as the shortcomings of each of the unions and why each is ripe for entry. DSA also identifies ways outsiders can access jobs that would allow them enter into the labor groups.

This reform caucus has created an active, strong presence at Montefiore Medical Center. This level of energy and organization has not necessarily extended to other hospitals.

DSA Memo

“Coincidentally”  A NYSNA Representative at Montefiore is also the chair of the NYC DSA Labor branch.

Below are excerpts from this memo that specifically targets our Union. Here is the full 37 page DSA document.

Nursing is an excellent profession for socialists to consider. Nurses cannot be outsourced or easily replaced because of a national nursing shortage and the nature of nursing as a highly skilled occupation.

For these reasons, nurses have a tremendous amount of economic leverage.

DSA already has a density of nurses in NYSNA. These nurses have already participated in meaningful work within the union and have started mentoring socialists looking to enter the nursing profession….. once hired RNs can expect a starting salary of $75,000-$96,000 depending on their facility.

These jobs are often rife with potential organizing issues such as inadequate staffing, oppressive administrators, supply shortages, and contract campaigns. For these reasons, nursing is a highly strategic sector to focus organizing efforts and should be included in DSA’s Rank-and-file Resolution work.

There are several RNs and NYSNA Staff who are members of DSA Labor Branch that are actively working to expand a socialist presence in nursing struggles through social events and workplace organizing. There are small groups of nurses at hospitals throughout the city organizing on the shop floor and within NYSNA.

Union’s Internal/External Political Status

There are a number of nursing unions in NYC including SEIU, NYSNA, and NYPNU. NYC-DSA should focus most of its energy on NYSNA. NYSNA represents 42,000 nurses in New York State and is New York’s largest union for nurses. NYSNA has transformed into a “progressive” union since a reform caucus took leadership in 2011. This reform caucus has created an active, strong presence at Montefiore Medical Center. This level of energy and organization has not necessarily extended to other hospitals.


New York City nurses are predominantly women of color, a minority in NYC-DSA. DSA has described itself as committed to maintaining an active and diverse membership but is primarily composed of middle-class white people. In order to be a truly broad-based working class organization, DSA must make a concerted effort to expand organizing efforts in sectors dominated by communities not currently represented in DSA. Nursing is one of these sectors.

IS THIS GOOD NEWS FOR NYSNA? NYSNA I SeeYou doesn’t think so…….You be the judge….


Published by muckraker

We are a group of NYSNA Nurses who care about the future of our union. We want democracy, transparency, and accountability. Some of us are retired, some are recent members, and we are at all points in between. Any information you provide us will remain anonymous unless authorized by you.

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