Labour's decision to "bribe" students with free tertiary education while not properly paying doctors and nurses shows it has its priorities wrong, according to The AM Show host Duncan Garner.
On Tuesday, the second of three junior doctor strikes is taking place, with doctors protesting against long work hours which can see them work 17 hour days.
- Doctors and DHB meet ahead of planned strike
- Junior doctors strike for 48 hours to protest new contracts
It is the latest in a series of strikes since the Labour-led Government came into power in October 2017, with teachers, bus drivers, civil servants, and midwives all walking off the job.
Garner says Labour was too slow in office to temper the hyperbolic promises they made on the election campaign trail and are now paying the price.
"Labour has only itself to blame for strikes occurring around the country. They hyped up pay expectations during the election campaign," he says.
"Suddenly, teachers, nurses, bus drivers, midwives, civil servants, you name them, all who held great hope of a pay day from their mates in Labour saw the cut of Labour's jib and said 'stuff you, we're striking'."
Garner says the doctors' demands weren't unreasonable or greedy for the responsibility they have, and the Government's free fees tertiary education policy was proof it had its priorities wrong.
"These doctors have our lives in their hands; they are already working in unsafe environments. No wonder many leave the country. Fifteen hour days, 17 hour days, 10 days on... it is ridiculous, it is unsafe," he says.
"Labour was too busy buying the votes of first year students who get their tertiary education 100 percent free.
"It spent $300 million bucks with this promise, to get what amounts to a few thousand more students into tertiary education. It is nothing more than bribe, let's call it what it is, to get students voting Labour," he said.