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PSA mental health workers march against violence

PSA mental health workers march against violence in the workplace

PSA members working in mental health units across the Auckland region are staging a protest in support of workers at the Auckland District Health Board's, Te Whetu Tawera Mental Health facility who are facing unacceptable levels of violence in their workplace.

Over the last 12 months some 213 assaults occurred at the mental health facility which is based on the grounds of Auckland City Hospital.

"This number of assaults is unacceptable. Our members should not have to put up this level of violence on a daily basis," says PSA organiser Brendon Lane. The assaults include being punched, choked and hit with objects as well as being kicked, grabbed and spat at.

"Our members should not be going to work fearing for their own safety," says Mr Lane.

"Te Whetu Tawera has said that any incident of assault is one too many but such words are falling on the deaf ears of our members who work at the facility. "They want to see management take stronger action to prevent violent attacks in their workplace.

"The PSA is calling on the Auckland District Health Board to listen to our members and work with the union to put in place health and safety measures that protect staff and reduce the level of assaults occurring at Te Whetu Tawera.

"Our members believe management needs to review staffing levels and the use of seclusion as well as improve its rostering system. We need to get back to basics to solve this problem," says Brendon Lane.

Information for media:

PSA delegates will gather at 1.20pm at the main gates of Auckland City Hospital, Park Road. They will then march to Te Whetu Tawera mental health facility where they will present management with a vote of no confidence in their ability to deal with the issue of violence in the workplace.

About thirty delegates are expected to attend this march. PSA organiser and spokesperson Brendon Lane will be present at the event.

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