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Waikato DHB clerical, admin workers accept deal

Waikato DHB clerical and administrative workers vote to accept pay deal

Over 85 per cent of Waikato District Health Board (WDHB) clerical and administrative staff have voted to accept the pay deal brokered by their negotiating team in mediation talks last week.

The agreement brings to an end a long running and difficult pay dispute with the WDHB, which has seen Public Service Association (PSA) members taking two days of strike action this year. Members voted to accept the pay settlement at meetings held over the last two days in Hamilton, Thames, Taumarunui, Te Kuiti and Tokoroa.

PSA organiser Linda Holt says clerical and administrative staff have agreed a new 17-month pay deal.

“The agreement ratified by WDHB clerical and administrative staff will see them receiving a 3 per cent pay increase. The increase will be backdated to 1 October 2004 and PSA members will receive a one-off payment of $300. Prior to industrial action and mediation members were being offered a 1.5 per cent wage offer over 12 months and a one-off payment of $200.

“The settlement also provides for the PSA to expire the agreement with 30 days of written notice. This means that WDHB clerical and administrative staff can now make a decision about whether they wish to join the PSA’s nationwide Fair Pay for All Health Workers campaign which is seeking to standardise wages within the various health occupational groups across the country, supplemented by a pay jolt similar to the increase nurses have received this year.

“This has been a difficult dispute and members are glad it has now been concluded. They are particularly grateful for the strong support they received from their fellow workers, including senior doctors and members of the Nurses Organisation, and the Service and Food Workers, National Distribution and Engineers unions.

“The dispute has also strengthened PSA membership at WDHB, with clerical and administrative members nearly doubling over the last twelve months.

“This settlement will have a financial cost and that is for the DHB to calculate. However it is much more difficult to calculate the value of the goodwill and loyalty of staff which has been sorely tested. This dispute has shown how important clerical and administrative staff are to the smooth running of the WDHB and members hope their contribution will be fully acknowledged in future,” Linda Holt said.


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