Nurses accept DHB pay offer

Long Lunch 07/08/2018
Photo: Getty.

Nurses have voted to accept their latest pay offer from DHBs by a "significant majority”.

It brings almost a year of negotiations and further strike action to a close, and was the fifth employment offer from DHBs.

The pay offer included two new pay steps for senior nurses and midwives, a definite date for the implementation of pay equity, a commitment to implement the safe staffing scheme Care Capacity and Demand Management (CCDM), and a minimum pay increase of 12.5 percent by August 2019.

New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) says it will urgently work with DHBs on implementing the conditions of the agreement.

“Many of our members have worked so hard for this,” NZNO industrial services manager Cee Payne told RadioLIVE’s Wendyl Nissen.

“I think many of them will be feeling pretty relieved today that there is a settlement and that we can move forward with actually implementing some of the hard won gains in this DHB MECA (Multi-Employer Collective Agreement).”

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is "delighted" nurses have accepted the offer.

"Our nurses are dedicated, caring professionals and deserve decent and safe working conditions. This settlement rightly delivers the biggest pay increase nurses have seen in a decade and will put 500 more nurses in our hospitals," Ms Ardern said.

Health Minister Dr David Clark commended the NZNO and DHBs for "finding common ground" after what he admitted were "lengthy, and at times, testing negotiations".

Listen to the full interview with Cee Payne above.

The Long Lunch with Wendyl Nissen, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.