Nurses and DHBs set to meet on Tuesday

Striking nurses outside Auckland Hospital last week.
Striking nurses outside Auckland Hospital last week. Photo credit: Newshub

Negotiators from DHBs and the New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) will meet on Tuesday to discuss an offer.

It's hoped the meeting will bring an end to the deadlock between nurses and DHBs.

"The negotiating team is looking forward to meaningful discussions in an endeavour to deliver a proposed MECA (Multi-Employer Collective Agreement) that can be taken back to members for ratification," an NZNO spokesperson said.

The nurses' union has rejected four pay offers since negotiations began with DHBs a year ago. The most recent was a $500 million offer from DHBs, which included 500 additional nurses to cope with shortages and a commitment to implementing pay equity by December 2019.

The union cancelled a planned strike on July 5 while members voted on the most recent offer, but that too was rejected and nurses held a nationwide strike on July 12.

It saw 30,000 nurses walk off the job for 24 hours, which resulted in the cancellation of hundreds of planned surgeries and appointments.

Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters says the Government had no more money for nurses and had already made its best offer.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson said he would not use surplus funds to increase the pay offer for nurses.


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