PSA stands with nurses as industrial action looms

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The Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi supports NZNO members’ decision to reject the pay offer advanced by District Health Boards in negotiations for a multi-employer collective agreement (MECA).

The PSA has 15,000 members currently in negotiations with District Health Boards, and it supports NZNO members and their campaign.

PSA members have raised the same issues around insufficient staffing which undermines quality patient care and leads to staff fatigue and burnout.

PSA Assistant National Secretary Warwick Jones says the current dispute is the result of a decade of joint campaigning around workloads and pay, which escalated last year in an election campaign around health funding.

"For nine years under the National government, health workers kept our health system alive - at sometimes great personal cost," Mr Jones says.

"For far too long, workloads have been unsustainable, and health workers have struggled to provide New Zealanders with the care they need when they need it.

"This pay offer doesn’t go nearly far enough in recognising the immense contribution union members have made, so we’re not surprised the offer has been rejected."

Mr Jones says PSA members working in DHBs understand the stresses.

"PSA members in nursing, allied health, admin/clerical and other parts of the health system share NZNO members’ deep concern.

"They have told us countless stories of unfilled vacancies, unpaid overtime, unsafe working environments and struggles with fatigue, stress and burnout.

"Union members’ goodwill has gone unrecognised for too long.

"We call on DHB employers and the government to work with unions for a swift resolution of this issue."