I knew it was coming in the good State of Indiana and here it is; the beginning of the end or the end of the beginning (depending on your views) for Initial Applications for Licensure by Examination.
Effective July 1, 2011, the Indiana Board of Nursing requires a national criminal history background check at the cost of the individual. Can you say FBI?
Maybe this will be a sign for nursing students and NCLEX-Applicants for initial licensure before the Indiana State Nursing Board to really consider their situation, the circumstances, and consult with an attorney before appearing before the Board to respond to affirmative responses for criminal convictions.
The State of Indiana was relying on the self-disclosure of all criminal history by applicants for licensure in healthcare professions which frankly did not work. http://www.in.gov/pla/3242.htm
The State website also notes that 31 states require a criminal background check for nursing licensure already. Give it another 5 years and it will be close to all 50 states.
Also this may be a money maker for the State of Indiana as $15.00 of the $42.50 goes to the State's general fund. Really? That's nice to tax students who are maxed out with student loans and who may not be able to obtain a license because of the criminal.
This does not apply to renewal applicants in the State of Indiana, yet! I would hope that State Professional Associations representing the various healthcare regulatory boards would "man up" and legally challenge any law requiringbackground checks for licensure renewal with a State Nursing Board as opposed to self-disclosure. Also I don't think healthcare regulatory boards have the manpower to deal with the influx of cases and headaches that would result from mandatory criminal background checks for renewal applicants.
I would probably have to hire an associate attorney (licensed in at least two states) and two paralegals if the Ohio, Kentucky, and/or Indiana Nursing Boards require mandatory criminal background checks for license renewal. Damn maybe I could finally break the sound barrier from the muddy middle class to the murky lower upper but still middle of the middle.
I have always been intrigued with class, income, and education stratifications in the US since high school when my social science teacher named the characteristics of socio-economic depressed neighborhoods and pointed out which neighborhoods were considered economically depressed by definition. Guess what? I lived in what he termed as an economically depressed neighborhood. He described white collar vs. blue collar. He identified poverty level and the characteristics of poverty. He identified the layers between the classes of US society and the definitions and rationales.
I was not offended because I knew we lived good but the concepts, meanings, and implications (I started critically thinking early boo boo) floored me and I wanted to know more.
This particular lecture by Mr. Brandenburg enlightened and challenged me. Thank you Mr. Brandenburg.
These were the days when high school teachers could actually offend "you and your mama" and not have to worry about being sued in civil court, workplace complaints, and State DOE complaints. I told my grandmothers and they were very angry and told me about the rich history and sense of family in predominately black neighborhoods. I listened but I knew there was more and I needed to know and to know I needed to read and read and read and I did. I needed to know more about money, business, race, poverty, and economics. Why at age 16? I don't know.
I was interested in astronomy in my preteens and therefore I read up on astronomy. I wanted to be an astronomer and I had at least three telescopes and two microscopes because I went through a biologist phase because I used to fish with my grandfathers. Yes, I can fish!
I mentioned this to my grandmother and she said that's wonderful and purchased more books. I later became interested in Greek mythology and told my grandmother, I wanted to study mythology more. She grinned and purchased more books. I took home ec and started to help more with cooking, cleaning, and ironing and I told my grandmother I wanted to be a housewife. She laughed (I might have to f/u with her about this one now that I think about it!) and she showed me how to cook "soul food" over the years.
Potatoe Salad (from scratch of course) is the key to a long life baby and the movie, Who Made the Potatoe Salad? is real. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0452706/. I still laugh because regardless of the number of sides, entrees, meats, and desserts we have at one of our many family functions, someone asks will ask Who Made the Potatoe Salad?
Right before my high school graduation, I told my grandmother, I want to be a lawyer. She frowned, paused (she almost chocked now that I think about it), and then said "There are too many lawyers, you want to be a nurse."
What have I learned since high school and Mr. Brandenburg?
1. Criminal convictions can make a break or person especially one seeking a state license as a healthcare professional today. Got criminal? Talk to a license lawyer like LaTonia before you apply to a technical, trade, vocational, or professional program requiring a state license or certainly before you attempt to "license up."
2. I can be a RN and an attorney;
3. Knowing how to cook, clean, and iron will never go out of style;
4. A prenup written cold is better than chocolate served warm; and
5. I will always see myself as the middle of the middle (like most) regardless of income, class, status, title, or education.