There are a few ballot questions for this election cycle. The first, I have spoken about here, on Facebook and Twitter. It is about preserving the protections for transgender people in the Commonwealth. After the protections were voted in place by the people, a group of people managed to gather enough signatures to get it on the ballot again to remove those protections. This is part of why I am trying to educate people. I feel by helping to educate and remove the ignorance that less people will be inclined to believe these people. Thankfully, we have a lot of support. The Boston Globe reported that there were no upticks in public safety after the protections were in place. The lies that the people who want to rescind the protections about men dressing up as women to molest people in bathrooms just aren’t true. According to a report on WBUR:
“Massachusetts General Hospital doctors combed public records and recently published their findings in the Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. Their review turned up 14 cases of straight men posing as women in bathrooms and locker rooms in the U.S. since 2004 — none in Massachusetts.”
So that is 14 cases in the ENTIRE US in 14 years. NONE! I repeat NONE, in Massachusetts! Yet we have had transgender rights for two years! Yet they continue to be allowed to spread these falsehoods simply because we no longer have truth in advertising laws to prevent them from doing so.
What really gets me is that I have all the information and have done the research on Transgender folk, I found that trying to get good information about another ballot initiative, Question 1 regarding nursing staffing as a ratio of nurse to patients, is mired in misinformation.
I tried to get more information and watch the commercials but still not sure of truth. Here are some of the things I have found while trying to research.
If passed, Question 1 would establish ratios limiting the number of patients that could be assigned at a time to individual nurses at Massachusetts hospitals and health clinics.
Proponents of Question 1 have cried fowl regarding the opposition as they have stated that many of the “nurses” depicted in the ads saying they are opposed are actually supervisors and administrators and not floor nurses.
Logically, the idea of limiting the number of patients a nurse has to attend to should, in theory, also increase patient care as they will have more time to attend to individual patients.
However, the key factor in all of this is the profit margin. Healthcare is a big business. There is a lot of money in it and hospitals and clinics try to minimize the amount they have to pay out so as to increase profits. Profits before people. That is the paradigm we continue to embrace.
They thing is that while I support the idea of Yes on 1 and limiting how many patients a nurse has to attend to, I also know that administrators are going to do as has been told, cut services. Morton Hospital in Taunton cut their pediatrics and maternity sections. Pregnant moms now have to travel to Fall River, Plymouth, or Brockton to have their babies. This was done because these sections were not profitable enough.
This is the state of our health care system and it will just get worse as the demands for profits continue to grow while things get more expensive. Profits before people.
So while I agree with the premise of Yes on 1, I also know the cold facts that administrators will cut staff and services in order to preserve profits. I just wish they were honest about it instead of pretending to be nurses against the proposal. Just be honest, tell the truth, tell the people that if they vote Yes on 1, then you will cut everything to preserve your profits.
The real question though, while a hospital like Morton eliminated their maternity and pediatrics wards, what happens if Fall River or Brockton or Plymouth decide to do the same thing? They all want to preserve their profits.
This is our medicine. Profits before people. It will be a hard decision on this question. I just wish we had more truth to go on.
My heart to your heart, one heart, one spirit.
Emma Morgaine Croft