News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Cost Cutting Closes Café Weekends

Monday 7 February 2005

Cost Cutting Closes Café Weekends At Hillmorton Hospital

“Mental Health workers at Hillmorton Hospital say the decision to close the café on weekends by the Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) is a further example of Government underfunding of health and is a major therapeutic issue for patients and visitors,” said John Kerr, Acting Secretary of the National Union of Public Employees (NUPE) today. He was commenting on the announcement of the closure (from 21 February) to staff on Friday.

“The rationale for the closure is that the decision to stop selling cigarettes from the café has lowered the use of the facility,” said John Kerr. “The true reason is the Board’s need to cut $62m from budgets due to Government underfunding from Population Based Funding for Canterbury.”

“The café provides a therapeutic purpose for patients as they have interaction with staff while choosing what to buy and handing over their money. The aim of mental health treatment is to get patients back into the community – here the Board is removing the one part inside the Hospital most like the community,” said John Kerr. “For weekend visitors it also provides a spot to chat and buy items for the patient.”

“Staff fought for years to get a quality café on site. It is reasonable for nurses with no ability to leave the hospital between 1510 and 2310 hrs to expect a facility from which they can access a proper meal and have a decent break . With patients and staff divided into separate villas, the café provides an opportunity to talk to others and take a break in the ‘real’ world. Talking to a coffee or vending machine will hardly provide the same company.”

“Last year the Board contracted out the food services to Eurest. Now they are reducing the service that Eurest have to provide. Our Union is calling on the Board to keep the café open on the weekends,” said John Kerr. “A petition with 100 signatures opposing the closure has already been collected and more action will be taken.”


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

Gordon Campbell: Best New Music Of 2017

Any ‘best of list’ has to be an exercise in wishful thinking, given the splintering of everyone’s listening habits... But maybe… it could be time for the re-discovery of the lost art of listening to an entire album, all the way through. Just putting that idea out there. More>>

Scoop Review of Books: Ten x Ten - One Hundred of Te Papa's Best-Loved Art Works

An idiosyncratic selection by ten art curators, each of whom have chosen ten of their favourite works. Handsomely illustrated, their choices are accompanied by full-page colour prints and brief descriptions of the work, explaining in straightforward and approachable language why it is of historical, cultural, or personal significance. More>>

Scoop Review of Books: Portacom City - Reporting On Canterbury Earthquakes

In Portacom City Paul Gorman describes his own deeply personal story of working as a journalist during the quakes, while also speaking more broadly about the challenges that confront reporters at times of crisis. More>>

Scoop Review of Books: Christopher Pugsley’s The Camera in the Crowd - Filming in New Zealand Peace and War 1895-1920

Pugsley brings to life 25 exhilarating years of film making and picture screening in a sumptuously illustrated hardback published by Oratia that tells the story through surviving footage unearthed from the national film archives. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland