Despite having no patient care or attendance issues, Cliff has also been reported to the Minnesota Board of Nursing, a development that potentially threatens his RN license and which requires him to hire legal council now at the cost of $250/hour.
Would you be willing to help Cliff and his family with a small donation to his legal defense fund? The money would go to protecting a frontline RN that stood up for his coworkers and patient safety, support his family, and build the campaign to return Cliff to his job there in the frontlines of the COVID 19 pandemic.
Thank you for all of your help. Please share and know that together we can build the support needed for workers standing up everywhere.
Sign the petition and help us Bring Back Cliff!
More information below:
During the early months of the COVID 19 pandemic, frontline healthcare workers at Allina Health’s United Hospital in St Paul, Minnesota, found themselves facing increasingly dangerous working conditions. Nurses endured disorganized policy and protocol, contradictory orders from management, and hospital administrators’ systemic lack of preparation (for a pandemic predicted for 20 years), forcing nurses to take measures on their own to protect themselves, their coworkers, and the safety of thousands of patients. While nurses fought for basic safety during rapidly declining working conditions, hospital management began intimidating workers; shortly after the initial wave of COVID 19 patients, hospital administrators started disciplinary proceedings against nursing staff.
Hospital administration specifically targeted Cliff Willmeng, a husband and father of two, registered nurse for 13 years, and union steward in the Minnesota Nurses Association. They said that Cliff violated uniform policy by continuing to wear hospital-issued scrubs which were meant only for physicians, a preferential uniform policy not only unjust but one that also placed frontline workers like Cliff at risk of infection by asking them to wear their own scrubs and take them home to launder. After multiple attempts to improve patient and workplace safety and fearing for the lives of his family members, Cliff sent desperate requests to senior hospital administrators, filed OSHA complaints, and spoke to media to inform the public about working conditions in the Emergency Room of United Hospital where he worked. Without a single patient care or attendance issue, United fired Cliff on May 8, 2020, and reported him to the Board of Nursing, which controls nurse licensing.
Cliff’s firing is an act of administrative retaliation against a frontline medical worker and union representative during the worst pandemic in 100 years. Furthermore, reporting Cliff to the Board of Nursing and questioning his ability to be a nurse in the absence of any patient-related complaints is unconscionable. This unjust firing hurt Cliff’s family, affected his professional standing, and, as intended, intimidated the rest of Allina’s healthcare workers just when they are critically needed and risking their own health and lives.
We call on Allina Health to reinstate Cliff, withdraw the board of nursing complaint, and end harassment of all nurses and frontline medical staff.
Donate a few hours wages to help Cliff with the cost of the legal defense for this issue.
- Cooper A Bard
- Thano Paris
- Glen Willmeng
- Usha Abramovitz
- Amanda Thompson
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