Thursday 22nd November 2007
With nurses standing to lose up to $284 a week in shift penalties under a re-elected Liberal government, health workers around Australia met last month to voice their opposition to Howard’s WorkChoices legislation.
Sydney hospitals taking part in the ACTU’s ‘Workers who care day’ included Nepean Hospital and RPA.
Unions NSW Secretary, John Robertson, spoke at nurses’ meetings and urged them to let Howard and Costello know that ‘their pay and conditions are not up for grabs in this election’.
ACTU President, Sharan Burrow, also spoke at both hospitals, stressing the value of nurses and their role in our communities. ‘Nurses and health workers work extremely hard caring for our communities, and shouldn’t have to worry about their pay being cut,’ she said.
Former Labor Prime Minister, Bob Hawke attended the Nepean event and was described by NSWNA Branch Secretary, Peter Mason, EEN, as ‘impressive’.
‘He challenged every nurse to talk to five colleagues about what they heard at the event and encourage them to make an informed choice,’ Peter said.
Feedback to branches has been very positive, with nurses grateful for the opportunity to learn as much as they possibly can about what means for them.
NSWNA General Secretary, Brett Holmes, said: ‘We want nurses to go to the polls on election day backed by knowledge and facts, so that they make the best possible choice for themselves, their families and their fellow workers.’