Bernadette “Bernie” Brayshaw, RN
Affiliate: Fountain Valley
Unit: Same Day Services
Health Care Professional Since: 1984
UNAC/UHCP Member Since: 1994
"When we stand together, communicate with one another and are actively involved, we can learn from each other and gain the power to make a better place to work in the end."
I started working at Fountain Valley in 1983 and have worked in same day services for the past nine years. My mom was a nurse so I decided to pursue it and nursing ended up being something that I love. I like working hands on with patients and feeling like I make a difference in people’s lives.
Back in the 90s, we really had to fight to keep our benefits at Fountain Valley. RNs were being forced to float to units we weren’t qualified to work on. We didn’t know that we could hold our supervisors accountable for creating unsafe staffing situations. UNAC/UHCP really jumped in and stood behind us, helping us to take a stand against improper floating policies and unsafe patient loads.
I think a lot of people don’t truly understand the power that can come from everyone communicating openly with each other and standing together. I’m really happy that we have UNAC/UHCP at Fountain Valley. Now we have the power to protect our patients, help increase the quality of care, protect our licenses and be properly compensated for the work we do.
When you talk about the union, it’s important to say ‘us’ instead of ‘them’ because it’s the people who work at Fountain Valley who are the union. When we stand together, communicate with one another and are actively involved, we can learn from each other and gain the power to make a better place to work in the end.