Saturday, November 26, 2011

A letter to David Davis....

I don't know if you have heard about the Victorian Nurse's troubles here in Melbourne (you can read about it here) at present, but it is basically a stand off with our Government  because they are seeking nurses accept a 2.5% pay rise, in exchange for giving up Nurse/patient ratios.  Hence, making nurse's workplaces a more dangerous and stressful environment.  Yesterday, a friend of mine, posted on Facebook that she had been threatened with 12 months jail, a $6600 fine and the docking of her wages because she will not agree to those terms.  It unfuriated me, so I asked what I could do to help?  This is what I have sent:

"Dear David,

I have been forwarded your email address from a friend of mine, who yesterday was threatened with jail and a huge fine, because she did not accept a 2.5% pay rise and a cut to her patient/nurse ratio.  She has not closed one single bed or refused to treat one single patient, yet her name was taken so that legal action may be taken against her.

I, as a member of the public, and a user of the state public health system, find this deplorable.  I cannot accept that a caring, compassionate human being, who educated themselves in the field of looking after others, could be treated so terribly, and undervalued so greatly.  It troubles me that you and your peers and this Government find it acceptable behaviour, and troubles me even more so that you think the desirable outcome of your actions - a small pay rise along with cutting greatly the nurse/patient ratio - is going to be "ok".

I have been hospitalised many times over my 36 years, four of those times whilst having my children.  I cannot believe that you would undervalue the job that the midwives do and the invaluable experience they bring to new mothers at their most vulnerable time in their lives?  I believe midwives have one of THE most important jobs.  Bringing a new life in to this world is not an easy task, and midwives help to ease the worry of doing so as well as the questions of millions of new mothers.

Not once have I come across a nurse who is not worth double the amount they are paid.  They are the comforters in our public health system.  The people who patients, and patient's families call on first in their times of need.  They put up with a bevy of bad behaviour, mistreatment and disrespectful patients also.  And they do it with a smile on their face.  And yet, you still undervalue their worth?

Please re-think your actions, and realise that the nurses who are not accepting of your terms, are merely thinking of the risks those terms present to us - their patients, as well as them, as employees.  It will cost your government far more in legal action from patients who have not received the care they deserve, because they have not had enough nurses working in the health system.

Thanking you

Melissa Gottliebsen
Melbourne, Victoria"

If you would like to help, you too can email David at  Let him know that he and his government's treatment of our nurses is not acceptable!

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