Govt health cuts to blame for strike action

The Government must restore some of the millions of dollars it has eroded from the health budget, in order to avoid medical workers’ conditions being cut, and head off impending strike action, the Green Party said today.

People who work at Auckland’s three District Health Boards’ (DHB) have announced they will strike on April 8th over moves to cut the pay of new medical staff and reduce the working conditions of current staff in order to fund expanded services in Auckland.

“It’s wrong for the DHBs to expand their services at the expense of their own staff and it is wrong of the Government to starve the DHBs of funding so they resort to such unfair tactics,” Green Party Health spokesperson Kevin Hague said today.

“The National Government has underfunded health by about 1 billion since 2009/10 by failing to keep funding in line with inflation and population growth. These effective funding cuts are leaving DHBs struggling, and that is ultimately hurting workers and patients.

“Health Minister Jonathan Coleman is refusing to admit that if more people need more healthcare, then the Government has to provide more funding,” Mr Hague said. 

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