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The 26 filipino nurses and 1 physical therapist, facing criminal charges in New York for child endangerment, got the support of the American Nurses Association (ANA) and the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA).

In a press statement released June 1, 2007. ANA and NYSNA jointly condemned the exploitation of immigrant RNs by unscrupulous U.S. employers and called for better enforcement of immigration laws.

ANA President Rebecca M. Patton, RN, MSN, CNOR said, "These brave nurses deserve the nursing community’s full support because they refused to remain in a situation where patients were being denied the kind of care and staffing they deserved."

She added, "The real patient endangerment lies in the deplorable conditions that led the nurses to leave."

NYSNA interim chief executive officer, Tina Gerardi, RN echoed Patton's sentiments. "This case may be just the tip of the iceberg. Nurses who come to the U.S. deserve to have their rights protected," said Geradi.

The NYSNA learned about the nurses’ plight last month and assisted them in getting a hearing before the New York State Board for Nursing after Sentosa Care, LLC accused them of professional misconduct.

"Those charges were dismissed by the state board. We are greatly concerned these RNs are now being prosecuted for the same actions." Gerardi added.

The ANA is the only full-service professional organization representing the interests of America's 2.9 million registered nurses through its 54 constituent member nurses associations.
The 'Sentosa 27' are expected to participate in the New York Philippine Independence Day parade on June 3 (June 4 in the Philippines), where they will receive support from both the Filipino and American nursing communities.
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