Thank you health care workers

Written By: - Date published: 9:50 am, April 18th, 2017 - 28 comments
Categories: activism, health, Unions, wages, workers' rights - Tags: , , , ,

Good news, long overdue:

Big pay rise for women: Deal likely to alarm private sector

About 55,000 low-paid workers, mainly women, are about to get one of the biggest pay rises ever after details of a historic pay equity settlement are revealed today.

This is a huge victory for health care workers, and for women. It is also a huge victory for “resurgent unions”. Will it alarm the private sector? I certainly hope so!

The deal will cost the Government more than $500 million a year when fully implemented in five years, assuming it is signed off by union members and the Cabinet.

The settlement will mean hefty pay increases from July in three government-funded service sectors which employ mainly women on low rates: aged residential care, home support, disability services.

For various reasons I have extensive experience seeing health care workers in action. So I’ll take this opportunity to add my personal thank you for the work that you do. You’re bloody brilliant. You deserve this pay rise, and much more.

28 comments on “Thank you health care workers”

  1. Ad 2

    Broke my ankle running down Wanaka’s Mt Iron with dog yesterday. All in favour of pay increases for health workers, especially over Easter.
    🙂

  2. red-blooded 3

    I’ve got huge admiration for the workers (mainly women) who provide in-home care for people with ongoing health problems, allowing them to live with as much independence and dignity as possible and in the end to die in their own homes, if that’s what they choose. I’ve also had dealings with a lot of these people – friendly, caring, reliable, flexible, practical, helpful and hugely undervalued. It’s a job that’s physically and emotionally demanding and that requires a really varied set of skills. Kia kaha to the women who took this case and to the union that supported them through the progress. Now the government has to step up and actually provide the funds.

  3. ropata 4

    You forgot to “hat tip” relevant threads in today’s Open Mike
    OAB:
    https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-18042017/#comment-1321306

    Terry Win (an actual healthcare worker):
    https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-18042017/#comment-1321321

  4. Cinny 5

    Health Care Workers improve and save lives, and for that I’m beyond grateful.
    You have cared for my elders when they were dying, you have enhanced the lives of those with disabilities and in rest homes. Without your work heavens knows what kind of quality of life people would have. But it’s not only the physical work, it’s the emotional support that has been shown from patients and clients right through to family and extended family.

    THANK YOU, you deserve this, it’s long over due.

  5. Craig H 6

    Well-deserved and props to the unions involved. I am a member of PSA, and it’s great to see them pitching in!

    Hopefully this makes it viable as a career option and there are fewer issues recruiting staff over time, and the sector’s reliance on migrant workers can be reduced.

  6. Guerilla Surgeon 7

    They looked after my aged dad pretty well. And for that alone I’d pay them more than we pay politicians.

  7. I am pleased to see this happening and a bit of bright news amongst all the crap on the international stage.

    So here is to these workers, though really they need a comprehensive deal:

    https://willnewzealandberight.com/2017/04/11/supporting-our-care-givers/

  8. Ethica 9

    Just make sure it actually happens. Hopefully, we can get some ongoing reports.

  9. seeker 10

    Wonderful thankyou post rOb, thankyou. Well done Kristine Bartlett and the SFWU, So well deserved. This helps all our female healthcare workers breathe a little more easily.

  10. The New Student 11

    Fantastic news. A win for our working males too; pay equity will hopefully attract more male workers, or at least remove the stigma of men doing ‘women’s work’. When in fact it’s everybody’s work.

    I say this because two young men i know who work as carers have faced a bit of stick for their “poor career choices”. Like, really? Somehow it’s dishonourable for a young man to work as a carer? I have to say, from what I gathered, neither of them wanted those jobs; it was all they could get. But they do them. And not too badly from the sounds of it.

    So good on you, enjoy that raise.

    • seeker 11.1

      Excellent comment new student, thanks for this vital observation. Male carers were very important for my severely disabled non verbal teens and growing adult male students, many of whom had no family around them.
      And thanks Terry Win for 40years of caring at such poor pay, you have really cared along with all our other selfless carers (this to Terry’s comment on open mike and linked to by ropata above at comment 4).

  11. adam 12

    MMMmmm – whilst this is good on the surface. Who is going to pay the price for this? The real cost, not the wages but the other costs that are associated with this.

    Disabled, and the people in care – that is who will pay. With less hours of contact, and agencies going for cheapest option providing a sub standard service.

    You are aware that most of this work has been contracted out under the privatisation model of neo-liberalism.

    • red-blooded 12.1

      …and that’s why I said “now the government has to step up and actually provide the funds”. Looks like a good pressure point leading up to the election, and certainly provides another good reason for getting out there and making sure that we change the government.

      • adam 12.1.1

        And one “economic crisis” – there is your excuses for the weak and the poor will be left behind.

        Not holding my breath that a change of government will help, it would be better than this rubbish. Then again at this point a kick in the head is better than this government, less chance of a concussion.

    • weka 12.2

      right there with you adam. I’ve been alternating between being very moved by such an amazing win, and deeply angry at the contexts and what this will mean esp if NACT get a 4th term. I’m not angry with Bartlett and E Tū at all, am very very happy for all the women whose lives will improve drastically now. I have more to say on the other but will leave it for now because I want them to have their time in the sun.

      • Johan 12.2.1

        Spin, spin and more spin, strange to see Jonathan Coleman with John Campbell on Checkpoint showing the gov’t as the good guys in this well deserved monetary gain, never mind the court cases, the union help and the fact that these people had to drag National across the line to achieve this deal.

    • Rosemary McDonald 12.3

      You hit the nail firmly on the head there adam.

      Those of us who have had our lives blighted by having to engage with the health and disability ‘industry’ will have understandable reservations about this ‘win’.

      “With less hours of contact, and agencies going for cheapest option providing a sub standard service.”

      Damn right.

      Already happening. Kathryn Ryan interview the other day with this person….

      “…Chris Sanders, the General Manager of Sprott House, a charitable Wellington residential care facility who says clients are increasingly coming to them – late, sometimes malnourished, and unable to care for themselves. She says in some cases people who can’t go to the toilet themselves never mind leave the house, are being refused residential care.”

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/201839963/does-ccdhb‘s-ageing-in-place-policy-go-too-far

      I strongly recommend listening to this interview….mention made of the courage it took for Chris Sanders to speak out on her concerns.

      and….http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/328584/dhbs-'withholding'-people-from-rest-homes-association

      Meanwhile, while the InterRAI tool seems to be keeping those who perhaps need 24/7 support ‘aging in place’…funded supports for those at home are being cut back…

      Eligibility requirements are being tweaked and family are being expected to provide more unpaid support…..because…..back in 2013, in response to another drawn out battle for pay (never mind equity) the government passed this wee piece of legislative shit..www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2013/0022/latest/whole.html

      70APurpose of this Part
      “(1)The purpose of this Part is to keep the funding of support services provided by persons to their family members within sustainable limits in order to give effect to the restraint imposed by section 3(2) and to affirm the principle that, in the context of the funding of support services, families generally have primary responsibility for the well-being of their family members.”

      Worth repeating….”and to affirm the principle that, in the context of the funding of support services, families generally have primary responsibility for the well-being of their family members.”

      I’d be holding off the celebrations…

  12. mauī 13

    Great stuff, there couldnt be any group more deserving of a pay rise.

    • Antoine 13.1

      +1

      Except maybe those who care for disabled family members at home? Hope something good will come their way as well

  13. NZJester 14

    They delayed it long enough. Now that it is an election year they are like look at this big generous move we have made. It was not until the workers got some union clout behind them and threats of legal action that they even decided to negotiate.
    Most of the big stuff lately like the extra funding for more police and this are all things basically forced upon the government by strong public opinion. Opinion in non-election years they have ignored.

  14. timeforacupoftea 15

    Congratulations !
    This is fantastic for these workers.

    Heres my story !
    I remember a way back in 1971 ( Holyoake / Marshal GVT when my husband, a A grade mechanic and I working as a student in the hospital health profession, when our unions got us major increases to our award wages. He got a 42% wage increase and I got a 46% wage increase, I was still earning more than him even though I was a student.
    Things were very tight before the increase our rent was $12 per week for a one bedroom flat with kitchen dinning room and large lounge all open living and a very large bathroom/toilet, never seen one since so large and a large bath to equal the room size, so we looked for a boarder. We found a man through the church 20 years older than myself he was waiting for his devorce to come through ( I think they took 6 years back then ) he paid our rent. We ran into hot water problems though, as the water heater only held 20 gallons and with such a large bath we decided that the three of us would bath together so the water level would rise. So set bath times every night, 9.30pm unless we were going out which was 7pm. haaaaa such trivia but great fun times for me “blush”.

    Moving on.
    Anyway we saved like mad and had enough for a deposit for a brand new house by late 1973.
    But then, INFLATION took off, INFLATION INFLATION INFLATION that dirty word through the Kirk GVT house trebled in value, Inflation continued under Muldoon GVT etc etc until 1986 and then the sharemarket crash.
    Is this the start to high interest rates again ? I hope not but would help me now as I will retire when I feel like it but not now.

  15. mosa 16

    Great post rOb Great result.

    ” Resurgent unions ” YEE HAAAAAA

    Its about time.

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    Here’s some commentary from PR professional Matthew Hooton, owner of the ‘Exceltium’ PR agency*, on how he sees efforts by New Zealand’s Electoral Commission to increase voter turnout. “I think the way the Electoral Commission has behaved, taking upon itself ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    4 days ago
  • Its going to be a short election night
    Advance voting has really taken off this year, with enormous numbers exercising their right to vote early, parties campaigning specifically for advance votes, and queues at some advance polling booths. As of Sunday, 445,000 people had advance voted - more ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • We need more post-publication peer review
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    4 days ago
  • No choice
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    4 days ago
  • Too many cows
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Upgrading Takapuna’s heart
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    4 days ago
  • Cameras on boats will wreck ‘way of life’ – fisherman
    Push back against plans for surveillance on the high seas.       Fishing boats lined up along Bluff wharf. Photo: The Wireless/John Lake For Bluff cray fisherman Jayce Fisher, working the ocean is a way of ...
    4 days ago
  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #37
    Story of the Week... El Niño/La Niña Update... Toon of the Week... Quote of the Week... SkS in the News... Coming Soon on SkS... Poster of the Week... Climate Feedback Reviews... SkS Week in Review... 97 Hours of Consensus... ...
    4 days ago

  • Housing report earns Nats the red card
    National’s failure to acknowledge and fix the housing crisis will be their legacy. Labour will tackle the housing crisis head-on, says Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    16 hours ago
  • Sluggish growth reflects nine years of drift from National
    Today’s GDP figures reflect an economy that the National Government has allowed to drift along on the basis of growing population rather than improving productivity and adding value, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “It is important to recognise that ...
    19 hours ago
  • National’s campaign of deception an affront to democracy
    Voters this week have a clear choice between Labour’s optimism and honesty, or rewarding National’s campaign of relentless lies, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Day after day National has been deliberately spreading lies about Labour, our intentions and what ...
    2 days ago
  • National’s economy scorecard: D for drift
    New Zealand’s economy is failing the very people it is supposed to uplift, characterised by stalled productivity, exports going backwards and a Government content to let it drift, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “Voters have a clear choice ...
    2 days ago
  • Another day – another health crisis
    News today that the emergency department at Waikato has turned 180 patients away is another crisis for the Government and its besieged health system, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “It’s astonishing that the Government has had to rely on ...
    2 days ago
  • Labour will get tough on loan sharks
      Labour will take a tough stance on loan sharks and make sure that the Commerce Commission is properly resourced to protect Kiwi consumers, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesperson Michael Wood.   “People on low incomes must be protected from ...
    2 days ago
  • GP letter more evidence of failure in mental health
      A letter of complaint by medical practitioners to the Ministry of Health and Capital and Coast District Health Board underlines how badly patients are being let down by mental health services in Wellington, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “The ...
    3 days ago
  • GP letter more evidence of failure in mental health
      A letter of complaint by medical practitioners to the Ministry of Health and Capital and Coast District Health Board underlines how badly patients are being let down by mental health services in Wellington, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “The ...
    3 days ago
  • Tax cuts when kids go hungry shows National’s lack of moral compass
    National’s campaign of tax cuts that give $400 million to the top 10 per cent of earners, at a time when 120 Kiwi kids every year are being hospitalised for malnutrition, shows they have lost their moral compass, says Labour’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Freight being shifted off planes as fuel crisis worsens
    Export freight is being shifted off flights because of the Government’s failure to manage the risk of disruption to jet fuel supplies, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson Stuart Nash. “It has been revealed to Labour that non-perishable export freight is ...
    3 days ago
  • Apologise now Jonathan
    Health Minister Jonathan Coleman must apologise for his part in a $2.3 billion shortfall that has contributed to delays in cancer diagnosis and treatment, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “All the Minister could say in an interview this morning ...
    3 days ago
  • National’s health report card shows need for new plan
    From increased GP fees, to kids getting sick from cold homes, to denial of important surgeries, National’s underfunding of health has hurt Kiwi families, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern.   “It’s time to invest in the health of ...
    3 days ago
  • Eye clinic wait downright dangerous
    The fact that 9,500 Kiwis are waiting one and a half times longer than they should to get follow-up eye appointments is unacceptable and dangerous, says Labour’s Health Spokesperson David Clark. “These people are entitled to the reassurance that if ...
    3 days ago
  • National has serious questions to answer over Auckland fuel crisis
    Thousands of air travellers looking for answers to Auckland Airport’s fuel crisis should be demanding the National Government come clean over its failure to secure fuel supply for the airport, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “There are serious questions the ...
    4 days ago
  • Come clean on trade before the election
    In the two days before the election, New Zealand MFAT negotiators will attend a negotiations meeting in Japan on the successor to the failed Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), now called the TPP-11. The negotiations are shrouded in secrecy but we ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    6 days ago
  • National unravels on transport
    The release of extraordinary information showing that the East-West link could be the most expensive road in the world, at $327 million per kilometre, shows that National is fiscally reckless and out of ideas on transport, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson ...
    6 days ago
  • Saudi cover-up a perversion of democracy
    The Government has been exposed as dishonest after it was revealed that  they were wrong to claim they paid out $11 million dollars to a Saudi businessmen after legal advice, says Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Parker.  “OIAs revealed on ...
    7 days ago
  • Labour supporting Te Reo Māori in schools
    Labour will support a future where New Zealanders from every background will have the ability to use Te Reo Māori in everyday conversations, says Labour’s Deputy Leader and Māori Development spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “Labour will commit to a target that ...
    7 days ago
  • Is National planning a secret fuel tax?
    Sources suggest National is considering a secret fuel tax to fund its controversial Roads of National Significance (RONS) programme, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Michael Wood. “While the Government keeps up its stream of lies about Labour’s tax policy, sources indicate ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s plan for West Coast prosperity
    Labour’s regional development plan for the West Coast will build on its strengths in engineering and tourism, while delivering a much-needed upgrade to the Buller Hospital, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “Labour’s vision is for a thriving regional New Zealand, ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour committed to fair and progressive tax system
    Labour is committed to a tax system where everyone pays their fair share and where we start to address the imbalances that have fuelled the housing crisis, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson and Labour’s Revenue spokesperson Michael Wood. "Today ...
    1 week ago
  • A challenge to Bill English
    ...
    1 week ago
  • Flavell’s fake news an insult to Māori voters
    A desperate Te Ururoa Flavell has resorted to fake news about Labour’s position on his unpopular Ture Whenua reforms, says Labour’s Ikaroa-Rawhiti MP Meka Whaitiri. ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s tax cuts reckless and irresponsible
    It is time for Bill English and Steven Joyce to stop the scaremongering and lies, and front up to New Zealanders about the impact of their tax cuts, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Bill English has no credibility on ...
    1 week ago
  • Calculator shows Labour’s Families Package delivers
    Labour has launched a new online calculator that show how much extra families with kids will get from Labour’s Families Package, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “Families can go to www.labour.org.nz/calculator and see how much better off they ...
    1 week ago
  • Strengthening New Zealand’s identity through Labour’s media and film policy
    Labour has today launched its media and film policy aimed at strengthening New Zealand’s identity and providing sustainability for the industry, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour to invest in parents and babies
    Labour will fund an additional 100 Plunket and Tamariki Ora nurses to increase the help available for vulnerable parents and babies, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “It’s so important that our children get the best start in life. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour to build affordable homes and state houses in Hawke’s Bay
    Labour will build a mix of 240 affordable KiwiBuild starter homes for first home buyers and state homes for families in need in Napier and Hastings, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “In 2016, the populations of Napier and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour pledges more for Whānau Ora
    Labour will strengthen the oversight of Whānau Ora and provide an extra $20 million over four years to improve outcomes for whānau and families, says Labour’s Deputy Leader Kelvin Davis.    “We’ve created a new position of Whānau Ora Reviewer ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s housing band aid
    Throwing subsidies at an under-supplied housing market is one last desperate bid by National to be seen to do something about the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “First home buyers have been the collateral damage of National’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing, families, education and environment top priorities in Labour’s first 100 days
    Labour will take urgent action in its first 100 days in office to expand support for families and students, make rental homes warm and dry, find solutions to the mental health crisis and accelerate efforts to clean up our waterways, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour pledges to unlock funding for Te Hiku sports hub project
    The Labour Government will inject nearly $3 million into the Te Hiku Sports Hub project, to help realise a much-needed health and recreational facility for the Far North, says Labour Deputy Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s plan to get job seekers into better work
    Labour will provide real support for people looking for work by increasing the amount of money someone can earn before their benefit begins to reduce, reinstating training incentives, and putting a renewed focus on upskilling and training, says Labour’s Social ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour sets strong target and plan for climate action
    Labour will set a target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and take the necessary steps to achieve it, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern.  “Climate change is my generation’s nuclear-free moment. We have to take our place ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Are education cuts missing in National’s Fiscal Plan?
    National needs to explain why its plans for cuts to school transport have not been announced in its fiscal plan, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.   “Buried in the Pre-election Budget update is a $5m a year cut to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Joyce must come clean on Health and Education funding
    Steven Joyce needs to front up to New Zealanders and tell them whether he will fund health and education to meet increasing cost pressures, or risk seeing services cut and costs increase for parents, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis is National’s legacy
    Reports of tenants languishing in boarding houses for years because they cannot get a state house is yet more evidence National’s legacy is the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “We used to pride ourselves in this country ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour calls for release of report into civil defence flaws
    The National Government must stick by its word given to other political parties and release a technical report before the election addressing critical flaws in New Zealand’s civil defence capability, Labour Civil Defence spokesperson Clare Curran said today.  “Cross party ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Credibility shot as Government runs out of steam
    New Zealanders are witnessing the desperation of a government clinging to survival, evidenced by policy on-the-hoof, dodgy maths and dirty politics, says Labour MP Phil Twyford. “New Zealand had been hoping we’d seen the end of dirty politics, but what ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Steven Joyce must apologise to New Zealand
    Steven Joyce needs to front up to New Zealanders and apologise for his patently false and cynical attack on Labour’s Fiscal Plan, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Every respected economic commentator has come out and said that Labour’s Fiscal ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill English didn’t answer because the Oreti is badly polluted
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    2 weeks ago
  • Nats put out dodgy numbers – again
    National’s promise to increase the number of elective surgeries to 200,000 is bizarre, given Jonathan Coleman has claimed 200,000 electives are already being performed, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister’s Award to encourage young people into trades training
    Labour will introduce a $2,000 award for the best pupil in vocational courses in each public secondary school, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “We know there’s huge demand for trades workers, particularly in the building sector, where construction ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not another Nick Smith wild goose chase
    Only the election on September 23 can save the country and the RMA from Nick Smith, say Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford and Environment spokesperson David Parker. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government supresses Climate Change report
    The Government has deliberately sat on a critical Climate Change report for 5 months which they must now release, election or no election, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “I want the report released immediately, so that New Zealanders ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Joyce gets it wrong on Labour’s Fiscal Plan
    Labour’s Fiscal Plan is robust, the numbers are correct and we stand by them despite the desperate and disingenuous digging from an out-the-door Finance Minister, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Steven Joyce has embarrassed himself. This is a desperate, ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Making renting secure and healthy
    Labour will move to make renting a more stable and healthy experience for families, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. ...
    3 weeks ago