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Strong Public Support For Nurses’ Pay Petition

1 June 2004

Strong Public Support For Nurses’ Pay Petition

The counting’s begun and it’s already clear that well over 100,000 New Zealanders have signed a national public petition supporting Fair Pay for nurses and midwives.

The petition, which was launched by the New Zealand Nurses Organisation on March 8, International Women’s Day, officially closed today, although counting will continue over the next two weeks.

The petition calls on government to fund DHBs to pay nurses and midwives fairly and to ensure staffing levels that are safe for patients and nursing staff in our public hospitals.

“We know we have very strong public support, but we wanted to invite members of the public to demonstrate their support,” said Geoff Annals, CEO of NZNO today.

Geoff Annals said a UMR poll conducted last year showed nearly 90% of New Zealanders believe nurses should be paid at least as much as teachers, over 80% believe nurses should be paid at least as much as police and 73% believe nurses should be paid at least as much as junior doctors.

“In reality nurses and midwives pay lags behind other state sector professionals in jobs requiring similar skills, responsibility and effort,” he said.

Geoff Annals said when national negotiations for 20,000 NZNO members begin with DHB New Zealand in mid July, the NZNO negotiating team will be seeking a Fair Pay settlement and safe staffing levels.

ENDS

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