Merkley, Wicker, Johnson, Joyce Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Resolution to Celebrate National Nurses Week

Washington, D.C. – Today, Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley has teamed up with Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Representatives Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), and David Joyce (R-OH) to introduce a bipartisan, bicameral resolution recognizing National Nurses Week. 

The resolution honors and celebrates the important contributions of America’s nurses to safe, high-quality care and the invaluable role that nurses play in patient care every day and particularly in treating injured and sick patients during wartime, natural disasters, and public health emergencies—including the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“As the husband of a nurse, I’ve seen close-up how difficult their jobs are and how important they are to patients,” said Senator Merkley. “Like so many nurses in every corner of Oregon and all across the country, Mary has continued to serve throughout the COVID-19 pandemic—providing crucial care, support, and advocacy for families during some of their most difficult moments. This week, let’s all take a moment to appreciate and celebrate the nurses in our communities for their dedication and care, and recommit ourselves to doing all we can to provide them with the support they need to keep saving lives.” 

“Nurses serve at the frontlines of our health-care system,” said Senator Wicker. “This resolution signals our immense gratitude for these hardworking professionals in our communities.”

“As the first Registered Nurse elected to Congress, I hold a unique understating of and appreciation for the sacrifices and contributions made by nurses in communities across the country,” said Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson. “It is necessary that we take this moment to recognize and thank our nurses for all that they do. That’s why I was proud to work with my colleagues to introduce this resolution marking and celebrating National Nurses week.”

“The past two years were a stark reminder that nurses don’t just deliver life-saving care to their patients, they willingly put themselves in harm’s way to do so,” said Congressman Joyce, a Co-Chair of the Congressional Nursing Caucus. “As the proud husband of a nurse, I’ve seen this dedication and compassion firsthand and continue to be in awe of it. I’m proud to join my colleagues in celebrating National Nurses Week and ask everyone in Ohio to join me in thanking the health care heroes in our communities for all that they have done and continue to do.”

Nurses represent the single largest component of the health care professions, with an estimated 4 million registered nurses in the United States.  

Today’s resolution recognizes the importance of nurses in providing quality care, conducting medical research, tailoring care to each community and individual needs, eliminating public health disparities, promoting healthy lifestyles, and more—especially as the world continues to navigate life through the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The resolution recognizes the need to strengthen nursing workforce development and education, and calls upon all Americans to recognize, and celebrate National Nurses Week this year. 

“During the unprecedented health care crisis of the past two years, nurses have needed support both here in Oregon and throughout the country.  We thank Senator Merkley for being a champion for the nursing profession, defending and valuing patients, supporting our communities, and focusing on health care providers’ mental health and wellness.  The introduction and progress of this resolution is appreciated by every nurse in our country and we are deeply grateful to Senator Merkley for his support,” said Tamie Cline, President-Elect, Oregon Nurses Association.

“While every year, we take the opportunity to celebrate the dedicated labor, service, and leadership of nursing professionals across the country, now more than ever Nurses Week calls on us to honor these champions of healthcare for stepping up to be with each one of us, from before our first breath until our very last…in our happiest of days and in our worst,” said Jonathon Baker, President, Oregon Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals AFT Local 5017.

In addition to Merkley and Wicker, the resolution is cosponsored by Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), John Boozman (R-AR), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Ben Lujan (D-NM), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Steven Daines (M-MT), Tina Smith (DFL-MN), John Hoeven (R-ND), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Thom Tillis (R-NC), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL).

In addition to Johnson and Joyce, the resolution is cosponsored by Representatives Sanford Bishop (D-GA), John Yarmuth (D-KY), Don Bacon (R-NE), Stephen Lynch (D-MA), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Nanette Barragan (D-CA), Tom Suozzi (D-NY), Cindy Axne (D-IA), Bobby Rush (D-IL), Alma Adams (D-NC), Linda Sanchez (D-CA), Danny Davis (R-IL), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), John Larson (D-CT), Dean Phillips (D-MN), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Madeleine Dean (D-PA), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Michael San Nicolas (D-GU, At Large), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ), Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), Stacey Plaskett (D-VI, At Large), Scott Peters (D-CA), Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Sean Maloney (D-NY), David Cicilline (D-RI), Dwight Evans (D-PA), Mark Takano (D-CA), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick (D-FL), Frederica Wilson (D-FL), Mondaire Jones (D-NY), David Trone (D-MD), Joe Wilson (R-SC), Peter Welch (D-VT, At Large), Judy Chu (D-CA), Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), and Nydia Velazquez (D-NY).

The full resolution can be found here.