A Prince Albert nurse says she’s relieved the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association (SRNA) has decided to accept an appeals court ruling about comments she made on her Facebook page.
The SRNA will not challenge the court’s decision to overturn a $1,000 fine for professional misconduct issued to Carolyn Brost Strom in 2015. Strom will not have to pay the $25,000 in other costs the SRNA demanded either.
“I’ve barely had a chance to honestly realize ‘I’m free,’” Strom wrote on her Facebook page on Sunday. “But, I’m beyond relieved to know that I won’t be losing my job, or be forced to spend more time and money on taking my case to the Supreme Court of Canada.”
Strom said she found out from her lawyer on Friday that the SRNA would not pursue the case any further. She thanked supporters and her family for standing by her over the last five and a half years.
“I do want to take this time to thank everyone for your supportive messages,” she wrote. “It means a lot that you reached out with messages of congratulations, messages of relief, (and) messages of solidarity. I am humbled by your continued support and kindness.”
An SRNA spokesperson confirmed on Sunday that the organization would not be taking their case any further.
“The Investigations Committee of the SRNA has decided to accept the decision of the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal,” the statement reads. “Therefore, no further action will be taken.”
Strom was originally fined after calling the care her grandfather received at St. Joseph’s Health Facility in Macklin “subpar.” The Saskatchewan Court of Appeals ruled in October that the SRNA disciplinary committee unjustly infringed on her right to free expression.
“Nurses, doctors, lawyers and other professionals are also sisters, brothers, and sons and daughters. They are dancers and athletes, coaches and bloggers, and community and political volunteers,” the court’s decision reads. “They communicate with friends and others on social media. They have voices in all of these roles. The professional bargain does not require that they fall silent.”