Debbie Forward has served as Provincial President of the Registered Nurses’ Union Newfoundland & Labrador (RNUNL) since 1996. As President, Debbie represents over 5,500 registered nurses working in hospitals, long-term care, the community, education and research. Much of her work focuses on advocating for registered nurses and their patients and ensuring the publicly-funded, publicly-delivered health care system is maintained. Her advocacy efforts work to improve many aspects of health care, including the issues of retention and recruitment, improved quality of work life and working conditions for registered nurses, as well as the quality of care for patients and their families.
Debbie graduated from Memorial University of Newfoundland in 2001 with a Master of Education (Psychology) and a Bachelor of Nursing in 1980. She worked as a Staff RN in the Emergency Department of the S.A. Grace General Hospital for 5 years upon graduation and then held a position as faculty member at the Grace General Hospital School of Nursing from 1985 to 1996, teaching in all three years of the diploma program.
In her role, Debbie serves on many national, provincial and regional committees that provide input on health, nursing and labour policy. She has made numerous presentations on health and labour issues at conferences and educational seminars, provincially and nationally. Debbie works hard to maintain strong working relationships with registered nurses, employers, government, other associations and unions and ensuring the fair and equitable treatment of registered nurses.
Debbie resides in St. John’s, NL, and is a very proud mother and grandmother.