News

Union: Nurses' anger over move for poorer wages, conditions

Nurses have rejected a new offer on wages and conditions.
Nurses have rejected a new offer on wages and conditions. Leigh Jensen

GYMPIE nurses are among thousands of Queensland nurses to reject a new wages and conditions offer from BlueCare/Wesley Mission Brisbane (BCWMB).

Queensland Nurses' Union (QNU) members voted overwhelmingly to reject the offer - a move that QNU Secretary Beth Mohle said was a result of the BCWMB's attempt to cut overtime, create below award pay and introduce split shifts of as little as an hour.

Ms Mohle said nurses in more than 120 Queensland communities voted to fight the move.

She said nurses looking after the elderly in private facilities already earn almost $600 a fortnight less than their counterparts in the public health system, and the changes could have forced up to 9000 healthcare workers in 126 BCWMB aged care facilities state-wide to seek alternate employment.

"We are very concerned about the impact these unprecedented changes could have had on elderly Queenslanders and the nurses who care for them,'' Ms Mohle said.

"It is not surprising nurses and aged care workers in almost every Queensland community have voted overwhelmingly to fight BlueCare/Wesley Mission Brisbane's attack on pay, conditions and delivery of care.” 

Nurses and carers have sent a strong message to Blue Care and Wesley Mission Brisbane and their substandard agreement has been rejected. It is not known if BCWMB will try to force the previous proposal or amend their offer.

Ms Mohle said BCWMB run aged care facilities throughout the state as part of UnitingCare Queensland which recently reported a $40 million surplus. 

BCWMB's proposed wage and condition changes were outlined in an enterprise bargaining proposal which QNU said offered staff less pay and workplace provisions than those agreed to in 2013.

These included:

  • The removal of overtime resulting in below award wages for hours worked
  • The encouragement of broken shifts, some broken into two or three shifts per day of as little as one hour each
  • The reduction of hours and wages despite existing work contracts and the loss of job security for part-time employees.

The QNU has declared it will work with nurses in impacted communities on industrial activities should BCWMB refuse to offer improved wages and working conditions.

Ms Mohle said the aged care nurses who looked after Queensland's elderly would ensure no residents were impacted as a result of any industrial activities.

Gympie Times


Weather: Storm bearing down on Gympie as cold front hits

David Carvosso snapped this shot of the storm over Warwick on Sunday night.

Higgins: Forecasts, warnings to be taken 'very seriously'

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump clash in debate

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump listens to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton during the presidential debate

The first US presidential debate was as bizarre as expected

10,000 hit the Bay for Seafood Festival

A huge crowd turned out to enjoy the Tin Can Bay Seafood Festival on Saturday and mingle with the colourful mascots.

10,000 people converge on Tin Can Bay for the Seafood Festival

Local Partners

Testament's new album is a concept album

ROME, ITALY- JULY 27, 2016: Testament photographed at The Roman Collisseium in Rome, Italy on July 27,2016. Gene Ambo

Testament to release new album

'Baby' recreates famous Nirvana cover shot 25 years later

The baby from Nevermind album has recreated the iconic cover shot.

PREVIEW: Luke Cage origin story is a strong addition to MCU

Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage.

MIKE Colter stars as latest Marvel superhero to get his own series.

Kate goes down fighting in heated Survivor elimination

Australian Survivor contestant Kate Campbell.

YOGA teacher's 'good guys' alliance fails to get off the ground.

Emily Blunt's (almost) singing career

Emily Blunt nearly became the British Britney Spears.

Angelina is blocking calls from Brad Pritt

Angelina Jolie has reportedly blocked Brad Pitt's number.

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Huge Gunalda service station set to open by December

NEW STATION: The Gunalda Service Centre, owned by United Petroleum, will include a 350-seat eating area and a truckers lounge.

The massive servo is the biggest United development in Queensland.

Highway upgrade drives momentum in affordable market

Accessibility and affordability are keeping interest high

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual