Nurses have started campaigning for better staffing and manageable workloads after an EBA negotiating process where Healthscope all but refused to fix short staffing.
On 9 March nurses downed tools and took to the streets, shouting “What do we want? More nurses! When do we want it? Now!”, and they did it again on 25 March because it’s the time for Healthscope to listen and act is long overdue.
More nurses are needed right now, and Healthscope must introduce an effective way to raise and resolve workload concerns, guarantee nurses can access supernumerary training and educators, ensure appropriate precepting of grad nurses and have the right staff mix so the right skills are available when required.
We met with Healthscope this week to again raise concerns around unacceptable workloads caused primarily by insufficient base rostering of nurses, lack of access to breaks and increased casualisation.
Healthscope have asked us to consider lifting some of our protected industrial action, particularly the ban on working overtime, but the bottom line is they must fix things because nurses won’t put up with risking safety like this.
Members at the Mersey lab want to know how any changes from the roster reviews may affect them and those at Burnie face constant short staffing where holiday and sick leave absences don’t appear to be filled, while all staff are worried about navigating through the new Kronos scheduling system.
HACSU raised these issues with human resources and got these brief responses:
Mersey roster reviews - “Staff are guaranteed hours on their contract, we have no intention of amending these”
Burnie short staffing - “Staff numbers have been maintained during periods of leave and as such this statement is not correct”
Kronos scheduling system - “Staff training is part of the implementation plan”
Short responses like these sometimes contain all we need to hold management accountable for answers to your questions.
No question is too silly to ask - if it affects you or your workplace you should get a response, however brief.
Agreement negotiations at TasIVF were far from smooth when it came to scientists, with the employer saying national CPI was a fair yardstick, conveniently ignoring the higher Hobart CPI.
They made an offer that didn’t address any parity issues, with Melbourne based scientists getting more money for doing the same job with more support, yet TasIVF’s owner the Virtus Group announced record half-year financial results - so we insisted they make a better offer.
After a drawn-out bargaining process, a draft agreement has been sent to HACSU for review and editing with a final meeting to complete the drafting scheduled for next week.
Well done to every member who stood up to be counted under pressure to get Virtus Group back to the table with a reasonable offer that will cover the next 3 years.
There are several matters that remain outstanding, with Calvary wanting to combine multiple EBAs into one state wide nursing agreement.
This was always going to be difficult as the employer also didn’t want to ‘overcommit’ the terms and mostly wanted to include the lower terms or conditions from the agreements on the table into the new EBA.
Workload issues primarily haven’t been addressed and HACSU and ANMF, working together, are adamant that an agreement that doesn’t include a workload solution simply won’t be good enough and won’t be supported by our members.
Your staff agreement sets your rights at work in terms of pay, conditions and entitlements. It is won by workers getting together and bargaining with the employer.
Your agreement includes a range of benefits that HACSU members have fought hard for such as:
Your agreement provides legal protection for your rights - the employer has agreed to all the terms and conditions so if they’re breaking any of them it makes it easier for HACSU to step in on your behalf.
If you’re unsure what you’re entitled to or want to be sure you’re getting the most out of your staff agreement, please call us on 1300 880 032.
Inform is your union’s Tasmanian magazine, and the summer issue contains hundreds of member and event photos, editorials, useful information, campaign news, staff profiles and member benefits.
Meet some of your delegates and get info about unfair dismissals, change proposals, long service and annual leave and workplace health & safety. Find out why social issues really are union issues. Check out some HACSU holiday homes and much more…
Click here to read it now!