Those at the top of the department “get paid less than at KFC” and interns barely earn above minimum wage, he said.
Grant takes a second security job at a bar to get by, which he says pays a better hourly rate than his hospital role. People in his department also work overtime “just to make ends meet.”
PSA organizer Will Matthews told AM on Friday that the incredible salary negotiations had come to this point.
“Frankly, it is unbelievable that we are now at this point after 18 months. Our message, not only to DHBs but to the Ministry of Health, is that six weeks after the generational health reforms came into effect on July 1 , they have to think about what they want their legacy to be,” he said.
“Is it these generational health care reforms or is it misrepresentation about their treatment of the same workers who have just guided us through two years of the COVID-19 crisis.”
Last week, Hawke’s Bay District Health Board chief executive and DHB spokesperson on the matter, Keriana Brooking, said the two organizations wanted to address the issues of low pay for health workers and achieve a agreement “so that we can focus our efforts and energy on resolving Allied Pay Equity’s claim for this group”.
“We recognize that negotiations have been protracted and that PSA members and DHBs have been waiting for some time,” Brooking said. “DHB still hopes to prevent further action and that the offer being finalized will result in the strike being lifted.”