ANMF MEDIA RELEASE: Nurses and Midwives have message for Tasmanian Premier as they close Hobart streets tomorrow – enough is enough!


5 December 2018

Nurses and Midwives have message for Tasmanian Premier as they close Hobart streets tomorrow – enough is enough!


  • Street Closure and Walk:
    12:30pm departing from Royal Hobart Hospital Liverpool entrance to Parliament Lawns
  • Media Doorstop:
    12:45pm Parliament Lawns
  • Gathering and Rally:
    1:00pm Parliament Lawns. Speaking time with ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary,
    Emily Shepherd and ANMF Representatives, Kat Loader and Gracie Patten

Members of the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation Tasmanian Branch (ANMF) in the South, will tomorrow escalate their industrial action by taking to the streets of Hobart alongside concerned community members. This action, will see road closures from the hospital to Parliament Lawns in pursuit of a competitive offer from the Tasmanian Government as part of public sector negotiations.

“This action is designed to allow the community to show their support for nurses and midwives to demonstrate that a positive outcome is not only needed for the Nursing and Midwifery professions, but for the Tasmanian community and broader health system,” said ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary, Emily Shepherd.

The ANMF entered good faith negotiations with the Tasmanian Government on 31 May this year, and to date have not been able to negotiate an outcome for members. As a result, frustrated nurses and midwives launched industrial action on 10 September.

“Despite the enormous challenges in health, the Tasmanian Government are still yet to put a competitive offer on the table to nurses and midwives that will enable quality care delivery both now and into the future. Historically, nurses and midwives would have been awarded a pay rise in the first fortnight of December, yet instead they will be rallying outside Parliament House just to get the Tasmanian Government to come to the negotiating table with a respectful offer.”

“The community walk and gathering today is designed to highlight that nurses and midwives are not just taking this action for the future of their profession, but indeed to ensure safe and quality health care services for the greater Tasmanian community into the future.”

“Nurses and midwives are tired and defeated by a health service that is severely under resourced, constantly over capacity, and without the required levels of staff to ensure safe and quality patient care. And yet the Tasmanian Government continue to add to nurses and midwives low morale by continuing to ignore them at the negotiating table,” said Ms Shepherd.

“We know that workforce projections are dire with an expected shortage of nurses and midwives to reach 123,000 by 2030. However, this can be mitigated with positive and decisive action by the Tasmanian Government. Yet they continue to sit idle and ignore this looming crisis.”

ANMF members are increasingly fatigued by ongoing overtime, double shift demands, and challenges associated with bed block due to lack of capacity. The workforce challenges are already evident with 7.4 million dollars being spent on agency nurses and midwives in the last financial year due to the Tasmanian Government having no strategy to retain and recruit their own nurses and midwives to the state.

“The over reliance on nurses and midwives goodwill is having a dire impact on the health and wellbeing of individual nurses and midwives. Yet they continue to work 7.5 million dollars a year in overtime and double shifts to ensure patient safety as there is no alternative and they refuse to put their patients’ lives in jeopardy or comprise their colleagues safety.”

“The Tasmanian Government should be ashamed of the negligence they have shown to nurses, midwives and their personal wellbeing. This is something that they have clearly shown by their lack of action to implement strategies to improve retention and recruitment along with an improved workload model.”

Nurses and midwives have vowed to continue their industrial action until they receive an offer from the Tasmanian Government that will ensure retention of the current nursing and midwifery workforce, will allow for positive recruitment, and recognise the significant efforts of nurses and midwives in public health service delivery.

“Importantly nurses and midwives strongly believe that these outcomes are not only required as individuals, they believe they are integral to ensuring safe and quality patient care for the future,” said Ms Shepherd.


Media contact:
Emily Shepherd, ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary
Mobile: 0400 884 021