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Caregivers Meet With MPs On Working Women's Day

7 March 2002
Media Release

Caregivers Meet With MPs On International Working Women’s Day

Caregivers at the Totara Court Rest Home in West Auckland will be taking their funding concerns to local Member of Parliament, Chris Carter and Minister of Women’s Affairs Laila Harre tomorrow as the Service and Food Workers Union and New Zealand Nurses Organisation celebrates International Working Women's Day.

March 8th, International Working Women's Day is widely celebrated in New Zealand and internationally, but this year the attention moves from the work of a few corporate working women to the thousands working in aged care.

"March 8th is a time to celebrate the contribution of working women in the Aged Care sector. It is also a good time to remind our politicians about the work still to be done", says SFWU National Secretary, Ms Darien Fenton.

"Aged care for caregivers is all about of low pay and gender discrimination.”

"Caring for the aged is one of the most undervalued and underpaid professions in New Zealand and it’s no co-incidence that the great majority of carers, and support staff are working women.”

"With the industry reliant on public money we are looking for a signal from the government as to how it will focus that funding to improve the working lives of those who provide the care."

We are meeting with a range of MPs at rest homes throughout the country asking for their support in the union's drive for improved pay in the sector, higher staff-to-client ratios and more training.

Darien Fenton says the union is supportive of the work done by the Coalition Government in aged care but is anxious to see the sector get higher profile in the next budget.

Te Atatu MP Chris Carter and Minister of Women’s Affairs, the Hon.
Laila Harre, will meet with union members at Totara Court Rest Home,
118 Beach Road, Te Atatu from 10 am on Friday, 8th March – media welcome.

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