House passes bill guaranteeing meal and rest breaks for nurses

OLYMPIA, Wash. - A patient safety and worker fairness measure that guarantees meal and rest breaks for nurses and certain other health care employees passed the state House Wednesday. The bill provides for uninterrupted meal and rest breaks, and prohibits the use of prescheduled on-call time to fill foreseeable staff shortages. 

HB 1155, sponsored by Spokane Representative Marcus Riccelli, addresses an ongoing issue for frontline nursing staff in hospitals, many of whom work shifts of over 12 hours without uninterurupted breaks.

While the issue is often raised in collective bargaining, employers don't always comply with agreements. 

House Bill 1155 now heads to the Senate for consideration. 

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