A few months ago the Ohio Nurses Association (ONA) announced it had disaffiliated with the United American Nurses (UAN). The ONA cited the UAN’s continuing discussions with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) as a major reason for the disaffiliation. Now, the ONA has joined forces with the nurses associations of New Jersey, New York, Montana, Oregon and Washington to form the National Federation of Nurses (NFN), representing nearly 70,000 nurses.

The NFN is the second national nursing group that has been created within the past two months. In February 2009, UAN, the California Nurses Association (CNA) and the Massachusetts Nurses Association announced an agreement to form a new national union, the United American Nurses-National Nurses Organizing Committee, representing nearly 150,000 nurses. Union Accord of Former Bitter Rivals is Bad News for the Ohio Healthcare Employers (March 2009).

The NFN has styled the federation as a “different choice” for nurses, rather than as a competitor with UAN. However, officials of UAN and CNA criticized the new organization, citing NFN’s continuing connection with the American Nurses Association, which was described as an organization with policies contrary to the interests of staff nurses and who “has never been a friend of labor.”