Don’t make health workers pay the price for Auckland DHB’s funding crisis

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Auckland District Health Board will not fix its underfunding crisis by cutting staff salaries, the Public Service Association says.

The DHB’s chief executive officer Ailsa Claire says her organisation faces challenges as the gap between its funding and Auckland’s projected population widens.

Public Service Association National Secretary Erin Polaczuk welcomes Ms Claire’s comments, because it indicates she now understands the pressures her staff are under.

"Staff across the DHB are already managing heavy workloads, and Ms Claire’s made it clear they will increase as Auckland’s population grows," Ms Polaczuk says.

"But they won’t solve that crisis by pushing staff to breaking point."

Three Auckland DHBs are locked in a bitter dispute with more than 3000 PSA members across the Auckland region.

They’re being pushed to accept a deal to switch to seven-day services - with no extra resources and a drop in their pay.

The PSA says industrial action is likely in the coming months unless the DHBs agree to return to meaningful negotiations.

"The PSA welcomes Ms Claire’s comments about the need for mutual respect and a commitment for all the DHB’s employees to work together in facing these challenges.

"We challenge her now to extend that respect and commitment to the DHB’s industrial relations, and give our members a fair deal."