CANTON, Mass – The Massachusetts Nurses Association Board of Directors – nurses and healthcare professionals elected by their MNA colleagues – have released the following statement in response to the violence and hatred being perpetrated against healthcare workers in Massachusetts and nationwide amid a dangerous political environment, and specifically the repeated bomb threats made against Boston Children’s Hospital for providing transgender healthcare.
“Above all else, our duty as nurses and healthcare professionals is to protect the health and safety of our patients. We fulfill this obligation through direct care and patient support, and by remaining vigilant about threats to our own health and safety. The highly charged political environment – whether bomb threats at Boston Children’s Hospital, white supremacists outside Brigham and Women’s Hospital, or attacks on reproductive rights – is obstructing healthcare access, endangering lives, and further harming caregivers already exploited by a broken healthcare system.
“We forcefully condemn any violence or hate perpetrated against patients, their families, or caregivers. The bomb threats and hate messages sent to Boston Children’s Hospital are despicable for their intent and their impact. No person should be attacked for who they are. No child should be made to feel like they do not belong. No family should have to consider the threat of violence when seeking healthcare. The gender-affirming care provided by our colleagues at Boston Children’s Hospital and other facilities nationwide is essential, holistic healthcare that treats patients as individuals whose identities matter. We feel intensely for those patients and families affected by the repeated threats at Children’s Hospital, and for the nurses, researchers, and other healthcare professionals who have been impacted by this hate. Political violence has no place in our society, especially in hospitals and other settings where our most vulnerable seek care. We denounce and will fight back against the anti-trans, anti-LGBTQ+ political agenda.
“As we have witnessed a resurgent campaign against bodily autonomy and reproductive rights, there has also been a dangerous rise in hate speech against members of the LGBTQ+ community. We have seen in Colorado Springs and elsewhere how toxic rhetoric and misinformation spread online can fuel deadly violence. In this political environment, we see legislative proposals that would criminalize trans health care and LGBTQ+ life, and influential public figures who feel increasingly comfortable demonizing people for their religion, gender, race, or beliefs. Elected officials are working across the country to erode or eliminate access to abortion. Fueled by a radical U.S. Supreme Court decision, state legislatures are weaponizing local zoning laws and seeking to pass extremely dangerous restrictions on what should be a fundamental human right to healthcare.
“We stand united in opposition to inequality and the vicious wielding of hatred and bigotry against any individual or group. As nurses and healthcare professionals we do our best every shift, every day to safeguard and heal our patients no matter their background or belief. As union members we will use our collective strength to defeat political hate and eliminate violence in healthcare.”
Founded in 1903, the Massachusetts Nurses Association is the largest union of registered nurses in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Its 25,000 members advance the nursing profession by fostering high standards of nursing practice, promoting the economic and general welfare of nurses in the workplace, projecting a positive and realistic view of nursing, and by lobbying the Legislature and regulatory agencies on health care issues affecting nurses and the public.