On November 28 in Washington, D.C., the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments (ANHE) and ecoAmerica’s Climate for Health program announced that five prominent nursing organizations have joined them as signatories of the new Nursing Collaborative on Climate Change and Health.
The collaborative will empower millions of nurses nationwide to reduce their climate impact, help patients, communities, and healthcare institutions prepare for the effects of a changing climate on patient health, and advocate for climate solutions locally, regionally and nationally, including within the institutions where they work. Organizations in the collaborative represent nurses from differing specialties, including the following founding partners:
- Association of Public Health Nurses (APHN)
- National Association of Hispanic Nurses (NAHN)
- National Student Nurses Association (NSNA)
- Nurse Alliance of Services Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare
- Public Health Nursing Section of the American Public Health Association (APHA
Through the collaborative, nursing organizations will elevate climate change as an environmental and public health issue that can be influenced positively by those in the nursing profession.
“I am so excited to this part of this timely and much-needed collaborative. Healthy environments are critical to healthy communities, and position individuals to enjoy rich lives,” said Dian Palmer, Chairperson of the SEIU National Nurse Alliance. “We cannot deny the inherent connection between climate change and health, and this issue deserves our steady attention because safe environments don’t only protect lives, but they are a significant part of a just and safe society. It is incumbent upon each us to pay attention.”
Nurses are seeing first-hand the social justice implications of our changing climate. Through the collaborative, nurses will bring attention to the needs of communities that are disproportionately affected. “The negative effects of climate change on Hispanic health are exacerbated by where we live and work, as well as challenges to adequate healthcare and medical resources,” said Anabell Castro Thompson, President of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses (NAHN). “NAHN has a special interest in improving the health of Latinos and Latino communities. Because of the link between climate change and health, we also have a growing interest in climate change and the environment in general. Addressing these issues as a member of the collaborative further strengthens our position to promote preventative health measures and health protective climate solutions.”
“Nurses are front-line responders who are seeing increasing health impacts from our changing climate,” said Katie Huffling, ANHE Executive Director. “They understand how climate solutions will benefit patient and client health, and want to increase their action and advocacy. We are proud to help them do so through this collaborative, and encourage other associations to join us and the great founding partners we’re announcing today.”
“We are seeing climate concern skyrocket in America, with health and well-being weighing heavily on American minds,” said Bob Perkowitz, President of ecoAmerica. “We are proud to partner with ANHE and these associations to make real progress on climate solutions, and to help our citizens protect their health and that of their families and future generations.”
To learn more about the Nursing Collaborative on Climate Change and Health and encourage your nursing association to join, visit http://envirn.org/nursingcollaborative.
To watch the Nurses Caring for Climate and Health video, click here.
About the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments
The Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments is the only national nursing organization focused solely on environmental health issues. The mission of the Alliance is to promote healthy people and healthy environments by educating and leading the nursing profession, advancing research, incorporating evidence-based practice, and influencing policy.
ecoAmerica builds institutional leadership, public support, and political will for climate solutions in the United States. We help national mainstream organizations elevate their climate leadership, providing them strategy, tools and resources to: demonstrate visible climate leadership, empower climate literacy, engage all constituents, and build collective action and advocacy. We help our partners permanently transform into national climate leaders who inspire others on solutions. Climate for Health is a program of ecoAmerica.
The Association of Public Health Nursesis an organization of public health nurses from across the United States and its Territories. APHN works to protect and promote the health and safety of the public by fostering high public health nursing practice standards, promoting and providing educational opportunities, and advancing the public health nursing role.
The National Association of Hispanic Nurses is a national non-profit association dedicated to promoting public health and the nursing profession for Hispanics in the United States.
The National Student Nurses Association is a membership organization representing over 60,000 students in Associate Degree, Diploma, Baccalaureate, and generic Masters programs preparing students for Registered Nurse licensure, as well as RNs in BSN completion programs.
The Nurse Alliance of SEIU Healthcare represents over 85,000 registered nurses across the United States working together to stand up for patients and the nursing profession and preserve quality, affordable healthcare for all. To learn more visit: seiu.org.
The Public Health Nursing Section represents over 1200 nurses in the areas of public health nursing practice, education, and research. Public health nurses interpret and articulate the health and illness experiences of diverse and often vulnerable community members and collaborate with people of many disciplines to plan, deliver, implement, and evaluate health programs and policies. Social justice, equity, and environmental health are among the Section’s strategic priorities.