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Nurses Unveil Web Site Highlighting Bush Administration’s Last-Minute Regulatory Changes

The California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee (CNA/NNOC) launched a new Web site, <a href="" target="new"></a>, to call attention to some of the Bush administration&#8217;s last-minute regulatory changes that could impact healthcare services and workplace safety.

The site offers an interactive game highlighting some of the "midnight rules" CAN/NNOC says the Bush administration is attempting to cement in its waning days. Healthcare, workplace safety and environmental protections are major targets of the proposed rule changes, "many of which could seriously undermine access to care, workplace safety and workers' rights and the environmental safeguards Americans depend on," said CNA/NNOC Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro.

"On Nov. 4, American voters send an emphatic signal that they want change from the policies of the past eight years. It is disgraceful that the Bush administration wants to squeeze in even more of its rejected practices in its final hours in office," DeMoro continued.

CAN/NNOC cited the following proposed new regulations:

  • A reduction in outpatient services for low-and moderate-income people covered under Medicaid, likely to mean cuts in such basics as dental and vision care, diagnostic screenings for children and lab and ambulance services.
  • Reduced access for reproductive and family planning care through a new rule permitting workers to refuse to perform abortions, dispense birth control pills or even provide emergency contraception in rape cases.
  • More stringent rules on employees' use of the Family and Medical Leave Act, which allows workers to take unpaid leave to take care of sick family members.
  • Revised OSHA regulations that make it more difficult to limit on-the-job exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • Numerous environmental changes that would permit oil and gas leases on public lands, more air pollution near national parks and forests, increased dumping by mining companies into streams, and erosion of the Endangered Species Act.

CNA/NNOC invites those who visit the site and play the game to sign an online petition to Bush to "tell him to do no more harm and rescind the rules that undermine our healthcare, public protections and workplace safety."

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