Nurses

Why nurses are striking

Nurses stand on a street holding signs and chanting during a strike.
Nurses strike outside a California hospital in 2018. Photo: Scott Varley/Digital First Media/Torrance Daily Breeze via Getty Images

Nurses, already in short supply, have not been afraid of going on strike at their hospitals.

Between the lines: Pay and health benefits are almost always part of why any worker considers striking. But nurses, who make $72,000 per year on average, are also consistently unhappy about understaffed hospitals, saying they're caring for too many patients at once.

School nurses are sorely needed, but often absent

Two women stand in two different open doorways that face a hallway.
A medical assistant and a family nurse practitioner who work in Thronton High School's health clinic in Colorado. Photo: RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images

About 25% of schools across the country have no nurse on staff, while 40% have only a part-time nurse, according to National Association of School Nurses data reported by USA Today.

The big picture: If students “don’t have access to a trained medical professional, and something happens, we could be looking at a catastrophe,” a parent leader in Manhattan's Upper West Side told the Wall Street Journal last year in a report that found New York City is undergoing the worst school nurse shortage in 15 years.