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Wash. State Senator Slammed For Saying Nurses Sit Around, Playing Cards All Day

A Washington state senator is facing backlash after she remarked that nurses spend part of their day "playing cards."
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I'm guessing it won't be a shock to anyone that Maureen Walsh is a Republican. Sen. Walsh represents Washington's 16th district near Walla Walla. She serves of the Health committee. If you'd care to voice your opinion, at (360) 786-7630.

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(CNN) A Washington state senator has drawn the ire of nurses after remarks she made suggesting that nurses in smaller hospitals "probably play cards for a considerable amount of the day."

The Washington State Senate considered a bill Tuesday, SHB 1155, that would provide nurses with uninterrupted meal and rest periods.

"By putting these types of mandates on a critical access hospital that literally serves a handful of individuals, I would submit to you those nurses probably do get breaks. They probably play cards for a considerable amount of the day," Washington state Senator Maureen Walsh said on Tuesday during a debate on the Washington state Senate floor.

Walsh, a Republican, was arguing in support of an amendment that would exempt critical access hospitals, in rural areas, and hospitals with less than 25 beds from the bill.

"I understand helping with employees and making sure that we have rest breaks and things like that. But I also understand that we need to care for patients first and foremost," Walsh said.

Walsh's remarks "demeaning" and said there is "zero logic" in covering nurses in some hospitals, "while leaving others without any protections."

Bonnie Castillo, the executive director of the National Nurses union was not amused.

Trust me, nurses haven’t earned the title "most trusted profession" for seventeen years running by "playing cards" on our shifts. WA Sen. Maureen Walsh should be ashamed to use to score cheap political points like this.

— Bonnie Castillo (@NNUBonnie)

Kathy Griffin, her mom an RN, weighed in.

Dear , Representative from Washington State,
Thank you of alerting me to a group that even I am not stupid enough to piss off. Ever. ps. My mom, Maggie Griffin, worked in a hospital for decades.


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— Kathy Griffin (@kathygriffin)

And numerous nurses tweeted their own disgust at Walsh's comments.

Nurses aren’t playing cards all day. We are caring for your mother, brother, sister, son, grandparent, niece..We are missing holidays and weekends. We certainly didn’t go into this professions to “play cards for a considerable amount of the day” @ Senator Maureen Walsh

— Julie Gardner, RN (@nurseJulieG)

I’d like to remind Senator Maureen Walsh of Lynne Truxillo. The Baton Rouge nurse who was attacked by a patient and died on April 11th due to her injuries. Oh, and she finished her goddamn shift before leaving. Don’t trivialize my profession.

— Natalie Hobbs, RN, CCRN (@Hobbs_Nat)

Hey Sen. Maureen Walsh, up for a game of go fish later? 😒 There are shifts I barely get a chance to pee.

— Kaitlyn RN💉 (@KWolf523)

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