The Oregon ENA, along with other professional organizations, have been working at increasing the penalties for assaulting nurses.
Revealed today, Oregon Senate Bill 132 would make it a class C felony to assault a worker in a hospital. While it is broad, it is not just nurses that are on the receiving end of assaults. A class C felony carries a maximum of 5 years imprisonment, a $125,000 fine, or both. This bill would be effective immediately upon passage.
Now is the time to contact your local representative and let them know about Senate Bill 132 and push for its support. Find out who your representatives are through this link: https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/FindYourLegislator/leg-districts.html
Nurses are the largest healthcare workforce in the US. It is time to show our strength.
From ENA (National): “In 2014, the states of Idaho and Louisiana made the crime of assaulting an emergency nurse a felony, raising the total of states with a felony statute to 31. Looking to 2015, ENA will urge additional states to strengthen their laws against workplace violence directed at emergency nurses and other health care providers. Currently, ENA State Councils in California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Oregon, and South Dakota are working towards having bills introduced during the 2015 legislative session that would make it a felony to attack an emergency nurse. In addition, legislators in the state of Minnesota, where attacking a nurse is already a felony, are looking at legislation to increase the criminal penalty from a maximum sentence of two years to three years imprisonment. While it is difficult to predict which of these states will see workplace violence legislation signed into law, ENA will continue to push for meaningful criminal penalties for assaulting nurses. “