Statewide nurses and midwives’ strike to go ahead

Nurses and midwives will walk off the job and rally outside Parliament House TOMORROW, Tuesday 15 February, demanding the NSW Premier resolve the staffing crisis in public hospitals.

Thousands of NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association (NSWNMA) members will take part in over 20 rallies tomorrow, as part of the statewide strike to highlight the government’s refusal to negotiate on safe staffing.

NSWNMA General Secretary, Brett Holmes, said members had reached the end of their goodwill and were desperate for the government to listen to their pleas for nurse-to-patient ratios.

“Our members are calling for commitment from the Premier that there will be enough nurses and midwives on every shift. Nurses and midwives have signalled how fed up they are with the NSW government for ignoring the need for nurse-to-patient ratios, similar to those already working successfully in Queensland and Victoria,” said Mr Holmes.

“The staffing crisis in health won’t simply go away on its own. COVID-19 has only exacerbated the failings of our health system. What we’re asking for is not unreasonable. Nurse-to-patient ratios do save lives and result in better patient outcomes.

“Late this afternoon, the NSW Industrial Relations Commission issued dispute orders and directions against the NSWNMA.

“The NSWNMA Council supports the decision of our public sector branches to take industrial action statewide. The strike and rallies will go ahead, as we are unable to comply with the orders.”

Tuesday’s strike will be staggered across the day, with some nurses and midwives walking off the job from 7am, for up to 24 hours. A full list of the statewide NSWNMA branch and facility strike actions is available here.

During the strike, life-preserving services will be maintained in all public hospitals and health services.

Strike rallies will occur throughout the day at Albury, Armidale, Bathurst, Bega, Coffs Harbour, Cooma, Corowa, Cowra, Dubbo, Gilgandra, Griffith, Gunnedah, Kempsey, Lismore, Newcastle, Orange, Port Macquarie, Shoalhaven, Tamworth, Taree, Finley, Wagga Wagga, and Yass.

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