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Nurses’ Pay Claim Strengthened

13 May 2004

Nurses’ Pay Claim Strengthened By Government Pay Equity Report

The Pay and Employment Equity Taskforce Report, released today, has reinforced nurses’ and midwives’ claim for Fair Pay in upcoming negotiations, said Nurses’ Organisation spokesperson and Taskforce member Laila Harré today.

“The figures in the report clearly show the gender pay gap is largest in the health sector, much of which will be due to the historic undervaluing of the largest group of health workers – nurses.”

The report puts the average pay of women in the health sector at 64% of men’s in the sector, compared to an overall gap in the state sector of just over 80%.

“Nurses will be heartened by the Taskforce’s support for equal pay for work of equal value across the state sector, meaning comparable pay for comparable skill, effort and responsibility,” said Laila Harré.

Laila Harré said the timing of the Government’s yet to be made policy decisions would mean NZNO’s DHB negotiations, due to begin in late June, will have to be settled before any new processes were in place.

“We are encouraged that the cabinet paper, released in the report, indicates that pay equity claims can be settled ahead of the Government’s final policy decisions,” she said, “we expect the nurses’ and midwives’ claim to be in this category.”

“It is clear from the finding of the Taskforce Report that without Fair Pay for nurses and midwives the state sector pay gap will not be closed,” she said.

“Nurses and midwives are more than ready to do this as soon as possible.”

ENDS

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