Women's Work:
Focus on Caring

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How Nurses Learned to Wear Two Hats: Professionals and Unionists

Stained Glass Window

STAINED GLASS WINDOW: Nurses Association of New Brunswick Building, 165 Regent Street, Fredericton, New Brunswick.

Nursing traditionally has been a women's profession built around ideals of service and subordination. In New Brunswick beginning in the 1960s nurses began to question poor pay and working conditions, thus beginning a process that would result in the creation of the New Brunswick Nurses Union in 1978. This feature examines nurses' activism in 1969, 1975 and 1980-81 as they began to explore collective bargaining as a strategy to improve wages and conditions. Nurses were learning to wear “two hats”, that of the professional and that of the union member.

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