College of Nurses investigating RNAO boss over social media post

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The College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) is investigating Doris Grinspun, the CEO of the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO), over controversial remarks made on social media, the Toronto Sun has learned.

The complaints concern a post Grinspun made on Twitter on Sept. 17 in response to a question posted by physician and CBC personality Brian Goldman, who asked what should be done if someone has a neighbour who has anti-vaccine signs on their property and lawn signs supporting the People’s Party of Canada.

Grinspun posted in response: “I bring them one of my yummy Empanadas and put a strong dose of dulcolax in!!!!”

This riled up many people on social media, who viewed the post as a nurse publicly threatening to hide drugs in people’s food.

Goldman’s post has since been deleted, but Grinspun’s remains.

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The Sun was copied on many complaints sent to the CNO from members of the public. The bulk of the complaints were made of the same or similar text and appear to be part of a letter writing campaign.

“If this situation were reversed and an RN publicly recommended hiding harmful drugs in the food of a vaccine advocate, the CNO would surely respond with a swift and harsh penalty,” the complaint letter reads. “Since Doris Grinspun is in a position of influence, she needs to be held to an even higher standard.”

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While Grinspun did not respond to a request for comment from the Sun, she did later post a follow-up note: “To my #antivaxxer friends, I do apologize for a poor taste joke. It was meant to call your attention and now that I have it let’s talk. Please know that I care for you deeply and am afraid some of you may end up hospitalized and perhaps even in ICU.”

When the CNO confirmed to the Sun that they were investigating the matter, they also sent an information page describing the investigation process and how it can ultimately conclude in a committee cautioning a nurse or requiring continuing education or remediation.

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