Nurses active in protest

Since the mean facts of Howard’s IR plans were laid bare with the release of the WorkChoices legislation in November, nurses have joined workers across Australia in sending Howard a strong message of protest against his plans to undermine workers` rights.

Nurses rally in protest
National Day of Action

On 15 November, NSW nurses stopped work and joined workers across Australia in a National Day of Community Protest to protect the rights of employees. Hundreds joined the 35,000 workers who watched a national satellite broadcast and rallied in the Sydney CBD, others were part of rallies in regional areas across NSW and many watched the broadcast and were part of community activities at their workplaces.

Nurses rally in Wollongong

Fox pops:

  • Kelly Hodge, RN, Prince Of Wales Hospital

You do nursing because you love it and not just for the money but there does come a point where you’ve got to live. When your pay and conditions are threatened it doesn’t seem worth it.

  • Tracy Burnett, RN, Camden Hospital

I think it is scary. The things we have worked for are all up in the air. I’m worried about penalty rates and overtime. I wouldn’t want to work nightshifts and not get paid for it. I voted for Howard but I wouldn’t tomorrow. He had this on his agenda but he didn’t tell us about it.

  • Rachel Bright, RN, Prince of Wales Hospital

As shift workers, our life is difficult and we should be paid for it. My partner is a teacher and I don’t see him for a couple of nights per week because I’m at work.

  • Sharon Pippen, RN, Macarthur Private

I’m here to tell John Howard that we have rights and we don’t want to go backwards. If they get away with this what else will they take away?