Online campaign raises $26,000 for PA nurse

Prince Albert nurse Carolyn Strom. Submitted photo.

A fundraiser to support Carolyn Strom, a PA nurse penalized for criticizing her grandfather’s care, has hit its target.

Just twelve days ago, nurses in Eastern Canada set up an online campaign for Strom on gofundme.com. By Tuesday morning, it had raised $26,000. That’s enough to cover the penalty the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses’ Association imposed on Strom for what it called “professional misconduct.”

In a Facebook post about two years ago, Strom commented on the care her grandfather was receiving at a long-term care home in Macklin, Sask. She called it “subpar” and said nurses there did not appear “up to speed.”

Natalie Stake-Doucet, a Quebec nurse and lead organizer of the fundraiser, thanked the 450 donors for their support.

“It feels really good to be part of such a cool group of nurses and friends of the nearing profession who are so committed to allowing nurses to have a voice in healthcare,” she said.

She said they never expected to meet their target so soon, if at all.

“Not in a million years,” she said. “When we started, it was more of a gesture. We felt kind of powerless and we wanted to do something to show we stood with Carolyn.”

But with a rush of donations ranging from five dollars into the thousands, the total quickly piled up. A Toronto lawyer, Amani Oakley, donated $2,000. Saskatchewan businessman W. Brett Wilson – known for his appearances on Dragon’s Den – gave $2,600 to the effort.

Strom is appealing her case to the Court of Queen’s Bench. If she wins, Stake-Doucet said, the campaign plans to give the money to a seniors’ advocacy group – a way of honouring Strom’s grandfather.

For more on this story, see the April 19 print or e-edition of the Daily Herald.

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