Equal pay protestors chase the Government out of the Dunedin hospital

Written By: - Date published: 1:50 pm, August 19th, 2017 - 50 comments
Categories: election 2017, employment, health, wages, workers' rights - Tags: ,

The National Party just tried to casually bribe Dunedin voters and got chased out of town instead by women in pink hats. If that’s not a potent symbol of the end of National’s government I don’t know what is.

Video is here.

Local women active in the equal pay for Mental Health workers fight co-ordinated a spontaneous protest after hospital staff let them know of the presence of the Prime Minister and the Minister of Health. Bill English and Jonathan Coleman were meant to be in the hospital for an hour as part of policy announcement but left early.

Protestors came with 100 life-size cut outs of health workersYesWeCare said,

…each cutout represented 300 staff not being funded.

The lack of staffing and resources at Southern DBH is a symptom of the government’s $2.3 billion of health underfunding…

That’s the equivalent of 30,000 missing staff and an immeasurable number of people missing out on the care they need, when they need it.

The protestors were well organised and saw English and Coleman off with chanting,

THEY RAN AWAY FROM EQUAL PAY

You rock Dunedin.

 

50 comments on “Equal pay protestors chase the Government out of the Dunedin hospital”

  1. Ad 1

    Top work and great media hit.

    If Joyce and campaign team hadn’t predicted protest after two weeks of Dunedin health stories, he’s a pretty poor tactician.

    Tvnz will cane them.

    • tc 1.1

      Wait and see as tvnz is under the nact thumb…..for now.

    • Tracey 1.2

      How long before Bill utters “usual activists” or “rent a mob”

      • Jagg 1.2.1

        I’d love to know how many health workers were there and how many were just your usual rabble, union dinosaurs and party members whipped up by David Clark being “relentlessly positive”…

        • greywarshark 1.2.1.1

          I am sure that you weren’t there Jagg and wouldn’t care to be positive about anything from the left.

        • WILD KATIPO 1.2.1.2

          Doesn’t really matter at this stage , there’s a groundswell of public discontent with divers issues with this govt , – and if this scares you , – you aint seen nothing yet !

          So you better start getting used to it.

          And ‘ union ‘ dinosaurs?

          We’ve only just begun.

          How long did you think you could just keep stringing along working people before they reared up on you and said ‘ Fuck off !!! ‘ ? … what , – another 10 , 20 , 40 years or so ? I know it may be tough for you to realize but that factory worker you see when your busy with your mates taking the piss out of him for being a low wage sucker working for the man is a human fucking being , mate.

          And more than likely has a family to support. So you can stop right there with the class war crap and start paying back the decades of cumulative wages you haven’t been paying by underpaying workers. Otherwise known as shafting people.

          And that’s what really scares you.

          Having to pay a decent days pay for a decent days work. Foreign concept to get your head around I know , but you’ll get used to being an honest bastard one of these days.

          Good for the soul so you can thank the unions for that.

          • Jagg 1.2.1.2.1

            My question was how many actual health workers were in the demonstration today – you know, people who tend to work at a hospital.

            Obviously touched a sore point so i’ll elaborate for you – a “union dinosaur” is typified by a muppet who is still fighting pre-1980s battles – that time before the information age when you had some relevance. “Only just begun”? Right, what are we in, a time warp?

            I just re-read my post and there was no mention of the Factory worker. In fact, I’ll just come straight out with it – your cliched reference to a proletariat factory worker is just a red herring.

            You have no idea who I am yet tell me to “stop right there with the class war crap” – The massive ironic assumption from your post is that someone holding my opinions must be the standard union caricature of a 19 century industrialist. You’re the one with the class war size chip on your shoulder.
            Pay back decades of cumulative wages? Why? I’m not an employer.
            “decent days pay for a decent days work. Foreign concept to get your head” – Three separate strands of my family immigrated here as West Coast miners in the late 1800s, 7 generations ago – They were the people who invented that saying.

            If you stepped out of your narrow-minded beltway mindset once in a while you might get some perspective. My forefathers established the Labour movement and I am part the constituency that walked away with Labour’s relevance to the modern world. So to give you back your own words… “you can stop right there with the class war crap” – although I can bet you won’t, your next move will be to double down and call me a class traitor or some other ridiculous accusation.

            • greywarshark 1.2.1.2.1.1

              Jagg
              Sounds like you climbed the ladder out of the mines laddie. Often the physical workers wanted to send their sons to uni or get training for easier work. But the workers determined to improve their pay and trying to improve their conditions to, they stuck together and those who kept on without joining in the fight, or stood at the side finding fault, were usually called scabs.

              You can’t start criticising other workers trying to improve their lot and still trot out what your forebears did 7 generations on. If you didn’t press for better conditions yourself, then you’ve no background in the struggle and become part of the ‘master’ class and don’t have empathy for the workers, just contempt.

              • Jagg

                Oh seriously FRO with your talk about the “master class” and the “struggle”.

                I told you, I’m not an employer, so whatever your definition of the fictional “master class” is I don’t fit the bill.

                You’re doing exactly as I predicted – painting me as some kind of class traitor – using 100 year old language.

                The only “struggle” in the 21st century is that by unionists to try and place themselves as elites dictating terms for the collective “working class”. That’s the ultimate goal – establish yourselves as bully boys controlling all aspects of policy, industry and economics. Wouldn’t that be lovely – total control over the uneducated masses, blindly voting for your mandate. Putting yourselves at the head of every cosseted committee and hoarding the proxy votes of your vulnerable, uneducated membership base. The socialist dream.

                The world has changed. I have no contempt for workers at all, quite the opposite – I have contempt for unionists who use and exploit vulnerable people as a means to gain the keys to power. And I have contempt for unionists who try to paint me as some kind of class criminal for calling them out.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  The world hasn’t changed that much: people coming together in a common cause can still wield more power as a group than they can as individuals.

                  That’s why union members still get paid more. Being paid more sounds quite “relevant” to me.

                  But then I don’t really think your argument is based on that kind of common sense.

                • millsy

                  So you hate unions then and want them back. Despite the fact that they have lifted millions out of poverty over the past 100 or so years?

                  If you oppose unions, then you oppose overtime pay, sick leave, holiday pay, etc and so on.

                  Employers bully their workers all the time.

            • WILD KATIPO 1.2.1.2.1.2

              Well , I guess I might have overrun a bit so happy to apologize.

              However, the factory example isn’t such an anachronism after all – and that’s something everybody here better get up to speed with. I worked for a security guard company contracting for a large outfit that was doing just that to its FACTORY WORKERS. I wrote about it in a recent post here on The Standard.

              And buddy … have you ever worked in security ?

              Out there at night when everyone else is fast asleep in the pouring rain liaising with the Police over a break in… getting paid $13.50 an hour ( 18 months ago ) , no overtime rates , just a flat rate, regardless of weekends or nights – paying for your own uniform and instant dismissal if you joined a bloody union ?

              BECAUSE THAT’S WHATS GOING ON OUT THERE.

              Hell , – I’m qualified to work as a supervisor in security – AND I PAID FOR THAT AS WELL. No comfy company training there…

              And don’t worry about me being anti employer either, – I’ve been self employed before and employed staff. So I know all the lurks as well . But I payed them a bloody good wage.

            • North 1.2.1.2.1.3

              Jagg you may well whakapapa back impeccably but so what ? And how would we know anyway ? We have only your word for it.

              What we do have are your own words…….”how many were just your usual rabble, union dinosaurs…….” Frankly that sounds too much like reflexive, well practised abuse of collectivism. How Deplorable to dine out on Your Impeccables by talking like that.

              • Jagg

                Oh I’m a deplorable – please forgive my treachery.

                Silly me for being a free thinker that doesn’t subscribe to your religious interpretation of what my “whakapapa” stood for.

                I could equally accuse you of high-jacking what my “whakapapa” stood for. How dare you judge me.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  For a “free thinker” you sure use an awful lot of someone else’s lines. In fact I haven’t spotted an original idea in any of your comments.

                  Stale old lies, yes. Free thought, not so much.

            • jen 1.2.1.2.1.4

              Jagg- we were a mixture of women, a number of health workers, some working at the hospital. However the day began with an equal pay rally-attended by women many sectors- the community public Services sector, education, nurses and other workplaces. We went to the hospital because the link between equal pay and health funding is very stark at the moment- For no apparent reason Mental Health support workers have been denied equal pay, even though they do very similar work to disability support workers- who were covered by the equal pay settlement. This is leading to pressure on the mental health workforce- an essential and already pressured sector. Furthermore the new equal pay bill drafted by Michael Woodhouse is awful- and will make it much harder not easier for women to win an equal pay claim. It was supposed to make it easier- we shouldnt have to go to the supreme court… Michael Woodhouse was at the hospital too- so we decided to take our equal pay action and our concerns about Health funding to the appropriate ministers- shame they didn’t want to talk-even for a moment

        • greg 1.2.1.3

          arrival of rent a troll

        • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.1.4

          “Usual rabble”

          Subhumans then. You white supremacists are all the same.

  2. That’s the story , people !

    Give these characters the bums rush ! People have had a gutsful of them.

    This is STILL NZ , despite what these clowns still try to pretend.

    03 Fred Dagg Government Departments – YouTube
    Fred Dagg Government Departments▶ 1:51

  3. mosa 3

    All lot of people in this country have had a guts full of these bastards and are getting angry after years of being suppressed , lied to and force fed propaganda.

    Great work Dunedin you have every right to be angry.

    Give em hell Kiwis.

  4. mary_a 4

    Brilliant stuff protesters. People power literally showing English and Coleman the door. Love it.

    Now to chase the devious, lying, cheating Natz scumbags out of government entirely!

    We can do this.

  5. Marja Lubeck 5

    Well done chasing out the government reps and their hypocrisy.
    Minister of Women making public statements to ‘pay women what they’re worth’ while at the same time the government is doing the exact opposite in the current Pay Equity and Equal Pay Bill.
    The first reading of the Bill earlier this month went through with only ONE VOTE majority: National (58) / ACT (1) / United Future (1) all voted in favour of continuing discriminating against women in low paid wages, while New Zealand Labour Party (31) / Greens (14) / NZ First (12) / Maori Party (2) voted in support of women.
    A closer look into the issue:
    This Bill as it stands will trap many low paid women on discriminatory wage rates, because the Government is trying to force through legislation that will erode and undermine the settlement achieved earlier this year by Kristine Bartlett and the unions after several court cases.
    The ink wasn’t even dry yet on that equal pay settlement, when the government released for discussion a draft Bill in April, slamming the door on future claimants.
    This Bill will make it harder for women to achieve fair and equal pay and if it isn’t changed, women would face too many hurdles to achieve equal pay.
    THE PROBLEM:
    The problem is Section 23 of the draft bill, related to identifying suitable comparators i.e. wages earned by men who perform work with similar experience, skills, and responsibility.
    The effect of the new law would be that it forces women, through their unions, to firstly identify appropriate male comparators in their employer’s business; then similar businesses to their employer; then the same sector or industry, and only then can they use comparators from outside their industry.
    THE EFFECT:
    It has the obvious intention to not only hugely slow down equal pay claims, but if this Bill had been the law when Kristine Bartlett and her union E tū were fighting for equal pay then it would have been much more difficult to have succeeded and won the historic outcome which was achieved.
    The Government needs to change the Bill so it is consistent with the already agreed joint Principles, and consistent with the Court decisions.
    The Council of Trade Unions, on behalf of all working women, called on all women in Parliament to vote for women and vote against the first reading of the Government’s Employment (Pay Equity and Equal Pay) Bill:
    “Men and women are still paid differently in NZ. Sometimes even when performing the same role. Often work which includes a “caring” component is devalued and seen as women’s work. A clear example of this was with the recently successful Kristine Bartlett equal pay settlement which resulted in over 55,000, mostly women, working in caring roles in residential aged care, disability support and home support winning pay increase. This increase was won because it was proven, and accepted, that those roles had been unfairly paid due to the fact that the work was predominately performed by women.”

  6. Ms Fargo 6

    Just as well Bill can do the walk-run.

  7. Zeroque 7

    Yep, damn fine job!

  8. red-blooded 8

    PLUS, these guys were in town to announce a commitment to rebuilding Dunedin Hospital THREE YEARS after Labour announced the same commitment. This was a major plank of the 2014 election campaign for local candidates down here in Dunedin, and the policy still stands.

    Side note – they blocked up the only short term parking access outside the hospital (for emergency pick-ups and drop offs – 5 minutes max) for more than an hour with their 3 limos. Such concern for the people!

    • AsleepWhileWalking 8.1

      Hope there a a nice shot of the limos on the news.

      • Dspare 8.1.1

        I didn’t see anything about the limos on any new source, but it doesn’t seem out of keeping with their other behaviour. Have a look at this longer video of the equal pay protestors in this ODT piece; at the 47s mark you can clearly see the bloke at the back close a fire door in their faces. Fire doors in a hospital where people are transported by gurney are meant to be left open, unless there is an actual fire (a politician’s blushes don’t count). But then later you see them jaywalking within fifty metres of a pedestrian crossing, so obviously the rules just don’t apply to National anymore. But of course:

        protester said she saw them cross the road, after chasing them through the building. “They ran away from us,” she said.

        However a spokeswoman for Dr Coleman said the protesters were overcooking what happened. She said the ministers were not “chased” but had gone out the back door of the building as planned, to cross the road to the university’s graduation parade.​

        https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/pm-caught-protest-dunedin

        Strangely enough there is no sign of the milling throng of the parade at that time, just a lone road sign for later in the day.

        I thought that Newshub piece was good for mentioning:

        [1:02s] It’s unusual to announce big projects under the government’s name in the run up to an election. The cabinet manual says the practice is usually refrained from, to avoid the perception that government resources are being used to push the governing party.

        http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/election/2017/08/protesters-greet-prime-minister-bill-english-in-dunedin.html

  9. CLEANGREEN 9

    SOOOO GOOOD to see this, it reminds me of the rats fleeing a sinking ship!!!!!

    More power to the protest group.

    Hero’s every one of them.

    I would love to see much more than this as we approach the election.

    Top marks Dunedin!!!

  10. He looked flustered as well he might.

    I support this equal pay initiative for mental health workers 110% – it is totally shocking the pay rates for people working with and saving the lives of people who are very vulnerable and usually scared. It is not bloody good enough.

  11. eco Maori/kiwi 11

    My grandson has a higher I Q than Bill English and he is four years old lol.

    Weka what about inviting Willie Jackson to write an note on the Standard .
    The Standard gets 4x the hits of the Daily Blog just a Idea

    • weka 11.1

      Any candidate is welcome to Guest Post here, but tbh at the moment all the authors seem like they’ve got enough on their plates, and a post by Jackson would probably require more moderating oversight than I’d personally want to prioritise. If someone else organised it I’m sure one of the authors would put the post up.

  12. greg 12

    well done time to boot these bastards out of office

    • eco Maori/kiwi 12.1

      I see one of Billy boys Muppet’s in the media were trying to use the Morrie Orri of the Chattem Ilands to whip up racial tensions to try and lift there polls.
      Not sure what site it was on looks like the stories fell flat. The wife at work so no help with the spelling

      • greywarshark 12.1.1

        We’re not having any trouble with reading and understanding you ecoMaori/Kiwi.
        Don’t let it hold you back. We may have personal peeves with some faults, and occasional moans come but actually it’s knowing what it’s about that’s important.

      • ScottGN 12.1.2

        I don’t have a problem with your spelling eM/k. All your posts are like reading a bit of Riddley Walker.

        • Robert Guyton 12.1.2.1

          You’ve read, “Riddley Walker”?
          Me too. Probably the only two who have 🙂

          • ScottGN 12.1.2.1.1

            Yeah I have Robert. About a million years ago though. I don’t think anyone reads it much anymore which is a bit of a shame.

            • Robert Guyton 12.1.2.1.1.1

              It takes some adapting-to, initially, but is a book that can shift your world-view (we can all benefit from that) through it’s story as well as its style. I recommend it to everyone. Finding Punch’s head in the mud was a great moment.

          • Eco Maori 12.1.2.1.2

            I will find the book Riddley Walker so I can see what your interpretation of
            Eco Maori is Thanks GUYS !!!!

        • eco Maori/kiwi 12.1.2.2

          My 8 year old granddaughter can spell better than me.
          My wife is my administrator
          I am the self taught mechanic ect
          We had a business that turner over $500 k 14 years ago put to much trust in some workers.
          And labour changed the law and let a Chinese company into the country .
          The Chinese company was all ready broke when it started trading in NZ caused millions worth of damages to other company’s as well I think the company got into NZ when the free trade deal was signed with China

        • eco Maori/kiwi 12.1.2.3

          I did not read your comments right All my post are true as well as my opinions and I have other people reading them I try not to post to much about my problem as it seem to scare bloggers away I just want them to see what the first rule in the Art of war is !!!!!!

          • WILD KATIPO 12.1.2.3.1

            … ” If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected ” …

            Sun Tzu.

            Your doin alright , mate. 🙂

            Sun Tzu’s 31 Best Pieces Of Leadership Advice – Forbes
            https://www.forbes.com/…/ericjackson/…/sun-tzus-33-best-pieces-of-leadership-advice…

  13. After some thought I decided that this article belongs in this post:

    This problem goes beyond the weekend effect. The NHS is in a crisis, and one that has been created by political decisions. These political decisions include underfunding and cuts, privatising services, the public sector pay cap, the new contract imposed on junior doctors, and removal of the student nurses’ bursary. Political decisions such as these cause reductions in care quality, longer waiting lists, anxiety for patients and staff, and dangerous staff shortages. Failures in the system of privatised social care for disabled and elderly people have placed an additional burden on the NHS.

    Which is what we’re seeing in our own health care system.

  14. JC 14

    “It is an historic moment for the Government to address this undervaluing with Ms Bartlett and the unions,” Coleman said at the time…..

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/08/16/42935/why-kristine-bartlett-now-feels-betrayed

  15. Hmmm… continuing on Sun Tzu , for those interested , there is this.

    Makes for an interesting watch. And certainly you will see principles the National party have used against the Left. Perhaps it is time to reverse that trend.

    Sun Tzu – The Art of War – Documentary (History Channel) – YouTube
    you tube▶ 1:30:34

  16. patricia bremner 16

    One thing I have noted over my 75 years, when threatened the right use their wealth power and positions to undermine the Left. So such petty derogatory comments are just more dirty politics imo.

    Bridges promised by Bridges …where are they???

    Hospital promised last election and this election..10 years away !!!

    Bill you are the joke of the week.

  17. Dspare 17

    There is an episode of Checkpoint that gives a background on the issues sparking the Equal Pay protests (hat tip to Bradbury on TDB for pointing me there):

    the Ministry [of Health] describes increased funding for mental health providers struggling to retain their staff after the pay equity settlement as “unlawful”.

    Since the pay equity settlement saw increases for workers in aged and residential support care, but not for workers in mental health support, the mental health sector has been losing exisiting workers and struggling to attract new ones.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201854695/moh-tells-dhbs-not-to-pay-mental-health-workers-more

    https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2017/08/20/cowards-bill-english-and-jonathan-coleman-flee-protestors-at-dunedin-hospital/

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