Public sector workers battling against the odds

World Public Services Day is being commemorated around the globe to highlight the invaluable contribution public sector workers make to the community.

 Nurses, midwives, teachers, police officers, firefighters and thousands of other public servants are proudly standing shoulder to shoulder, recognised for their dedication in delivering quality services.

Unnecessary cuts to public services in NSW over recent years have resulted in additional pressures being placed on these hardworking men and women, not to mention the impact of draconian changes to workers’ rights and entitlements.

Assistant General Secretary of the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association (NSWNMA), Judith Kiejda, said workers in our public services are right to be concerned about the future.

“Attacks by the Coalition government on wages, working conditions, pensions, public service unions, and the vital public services they provide to our community have been disgraceful,” Ms Kiejda said.

“We will continue to campaign against these cuts and to strengthen public services, which are the lifeline of communities and broader society.

“No one supports the dismantling of universal access to health either – the Abbott government must listen to the Australian people and drop this ideological budget proposal.”

The NSWNMA is an affiliate of Public Services International (PSI), a global trade union dedicated to promoting quality public services.  This year for World Public Services Day PSI is continuing its call for fair taxes through a Robin Hood Tax (or financial transactions tax), core labour standards and the importance of values in public services.

Ms Kiejda said governments appeared too focused on negotiating trade agreements and pleasing the corporate sector, instead of providing the basic necessities for all.

“In NSW, we have a very pro-privatisation Premier, which is a major concern for the future of public health services in our state,” Ms Kiejda said.

“At the moment we are fighting against the privatisation of the new Northern Beaches hospital.

“Not only would a privately run hospital impact upon accessibility for public patients seeking treatment, there are also implications for our members who work in the area – they’re yet to be notified of exactly what their entitlements would be if they transfer to the new hospital.”

The NSWNMA will take part in a community meeting in relation to the new Northern Beaches hospital at Dee Why RSL from 7pm on Thursday, 26 June 2014. All wishing to discuss the project and gather further information are welcome to attend.

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