So, members accepted an 'offer' - an interim offer
Despite ongoing issues with retention and recruitment across the state, the Government has refused to consider a number of improvements to nursing conditions put forward by ANMF members, that would see a considerable improvement in the working conditions of nurses, midwives and assistants in nursing in Tasmania.
These include some of those listed below:
- An increase in professional development allowance to assist nurses, and midwives in maintaining their registration and safe practice.
- Increasing allowances to nurses and midwives working in rural and remote communities to help attract staff to these locations.
- A refusal to pay mental health nurses an allowance for working in high dependency mental health units.
As those at the forefront of the health industry the Government need to start listening to our nurses, midwives and assistants in nursing who are faced with the issues of bed block, overcrowding and safe staffing on a daily basis.
The ANMF have surveyed our members about the offer from the Government which closed 5 July. Around 80% of those voting accepted the offer. We note that this off is not good enough to address the issues of retention and recruitment of nurses, midwives and assistants in nursing. This offer is a temporary stop gap mechanism to ensure that you, people who really deserve a pay rise, do not miss out on the removal of back pay (a threat which has been made by the Government.
Back payment will not be made until such time as a new agreement is registered with the Tasmanian Industrial Commission. Even once the agreement is registered, it will take pay office time to complete the necessary calculations. Once approved money will be deposited into your usual bank account. The ANMF will keep members informed about the process.
Rest assured, the ANMF are seeking to continue negotiations with the employer representatives to address other issues of concern raised by members, and to negotiate further pay rises in the next two years.
Because ANMF members have indicated acceptance of the temporary agreement it is important that all industrial action STOP. This campaign is not over, it may be necessary to reinstate bans later down the track. Members are to be congratulated for standing strong and making their displeasure known.