The latest featured article from the current issue of ANS is titled “Exercising Nursing Essential and Effective Freedom in Behalf of Social Justice: A Humanizing Model” by Donna J. Perry, PhD, RN; Danny G. Willis, DNS, RN, PMHCNS-BC; Kenneth S. Peterson, PhD, FNP-BC; and Pamela J. Grace, PhD, RN, FAAN. Using powerful personal narratives, the authors provide examples of ways they have broken through barriers, to exercise effective freedom and take specific social justice action within nursing. Dr. Perry provided this description of their work:
It is increasingly clear that health is dependent upon multiple underlying social factors including environmental conditions, economic status, access to education, employment and a peaceful and participatory society. These conditions are distributed unequally within our global community. In this paper we discuss the nursing mandate to act for social justice and the constraints that prevent nursing from realizing this goal. We argue that nursing has been impeded in addressing underlying socio-political issues that impact health because nursing has historically been positioned within an institutionalized medical paradigm. We propose a model of nursing essential and effective freedom based on the philosophy of Bernard Lonergan as a framework for addressing barriers to nursing action for social justice. And we share our personal challenges and strategies for addressing social justice as nurses working in various settings.