Department of Health Fails to Even Attend Tasmanian Industrial Commission

28 February 2022

The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) Tasmanian Branch today returned (Monday 28 February 2022) to the Tasmanian Industrial Commission (TIC) to seek agreed solutions to ongoing unreasonable and sustained workloads for members.

“Unfortunately, rather than attending the Tasmanian Industrial Commission to address members workloads, it was again more stalling tactics with Department of Health representatives failing to even appear.

“Yet, two senior legal practitioners with the Solicitor General Office did appear and continued to try and frustrate the process of addressing member workload and safety concerns”, said ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary Emily Shepherd.

ANMF members have been reporting significant stress arising from unsafe workloads for months, with over 600 Full Time Equivalent (FTE) positions vacant across the state’s major hospitals and mental health services, with hundreds of double shifts worked at each hospital every month.

“Members are exhausted, many are saying that nursing used to be their passion, but now that passion is dead.

If the Government put just as much effort and taxpayer dollars into addressing members workloads as they have in trying to prevent the ANMF workload dispute from being conciliated in the Tasmanian Industrial Commission, then we may have actually seen some solutions for members by now,” said Ms Shepherd.

It is just incredible that despite nurses and midwives being on the forefront of the COVID-19 pandemic for nearly two years that the Government has done nothing to try and retain existing nurses and midwives, nor made positions in Tasmania more attractive to those interstate with a pay offer and are failing to address members reported workload concerns, leaving many registered nursing positions the worst paid and over-worked in the country.

This Government has done well in dealing with COVID-19 from a suppression and protection perspective, however, it has absolutely failed in supporting nurses and midwives and it is now refusing to listen to or acknowledge that our members are working under enormous pressure.

“The ANMF will no longer allow the Government to recklessly delay addressing our members workloads and wellbeing and will advising members to exercise their industrial right to refuse unreasonable overtime and double shifts. The Department appears to believe that it can run the health system without taking advantage of our members goodwill, so by our members removing it, the Department will have that opportunity,” Ms Shepherd said.


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