Health Minister's black prognosis for wage round
The Health Minister has revealed today she has refused to find any extra funding to ensure nurses and doctors get a pay rise, Opposition Health Spokesperson Wyatt Creech said.
"Annette King has confirmed the fears of hospital staff that there won't be one cent extra from the Government's coffers to lift their pay rates.
"The Minister has told Parliament today that "she will not be seeking financial provision in the Budget specifically to fund a pay increase for doctors, nurses and other hospital staff".
"She has also told the House that "pay increases for staff will have to be funded from normal operational funding.
"Last year Annette King went into bat for nurses at Waikato Hospital for a 2 per cent pay rise - and condemned the National Government for supposedly blocking it.
"Now she's got the chance to ensure they do get a pay increase she won't deliver.
"Health professionals are already saying strike action is inevitable because Annette King has written to hospitals instructing them to be tough on pay rates.
"She's just made it worse, by confirming she isn't even trying to deliver on her pre-election rhetoric and won't be funding any extra money for pay rises."