Members at a mental health unit in Auckland are “stoked” about their new roster system.
For PSA delegate Anahira Dare it marks the end of an 18 year battle to bring back the 4+2 roster at Auckland DHB’s Buchanan Rehabilitation Centre.
“It feels surreal after all these years,” the registered nurse says.
“I’m pretty proud of myself. It’s actually nice to go to work now. People are happy.”
BIG PLUS FOR HEALTH & SAFETY
Anahira says nurses and rehabilitation workers at the inpatient mental health unit have sorely needed the four days on, two days off roster due to the challenging nature of their work.
“We have patients who are struggling to manage their illness. We build them up, give them the skills so they can get back into the community.”
She says working the old 5+1, 5+2 roster was exhausting.
“I would come home on my day off and just sit in my chair or sleep. Then you’d have to go to work again the next day.”
Anahira says the new roster allows more time for restoration.
“It’s a big plus for health and safety,” PSA delegate and senior nurse Aman Prasad agrees.
Aman says other advantages of the roster include being able to plan activities outside of work, and a more predictable pay packet each fortnight.
“Our pay used to fluctuate so we had no idea how much we were getting paid. That made things like getting a home loan difficult.”
The new roster is expected to assist with staff recruitment and retention.
Aman says a former staff member has returned since the introduction of the new system, while a few others are interested in returning.
DHB Mental Health & Addictions Co-Director Tracy Silva Garay is delighted to have reached agreement with the PSA on the roster.
“It’s great for wellbeing, which is important to us,” she says.
“It gives Buchanan Centre staff certainty over when they’re working and time for recuperation. It’s also good for service-users and whānau so it’s the best model for everybody.”
Anahira Dare says it’s been a positive change. “We feel heard now. Thank you to the PSA for your ongoing support.”
Thanks to all our members who supported the PSA’s Aotearoa Wellbeing Commitment during the election campaign. We’ll be continuing this campaign for a commitment to universal basic services.
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