Mental health care and support workers are launching a bid to get the pay recognition of their aged and disability care support counterparts.
The PSA and E tu unions on Monday will lodge an equal pay claim with the Employment Relations Authority.
From July, 55,000 aged care workers will start receiving significant wage rises over the next five years, costing the Government $2 billion, after decades of low pay
The unions want that extended to the mental health sector.
The PSA says workers are leaving in droves.
"We're calling on Government to fund a settlement that shows they truly value the workers who support our most vulnerable New Zealanders," PSA national secretary Erin Polaczuk said.
"They're working on increasingly thin resources despite massive increases in demand, and fair pay is crucial for the integrity of the whole sector going forward."