Last ditch effort to resolve industrial action
The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists (ASMS) and Te Rūnanga o Toa Rangatira (Ora Toa Health) will meet tomorrow (Wednesday) in a last-gasp effort to resolve industrial action and prevent a full-day strike on Christmas Eve.
Tomorrow will also see the fifth day of limited strike action when 21 doctors at Iwi health provider practices in Porirua, Cannons Creek, Titahi Bay and Newtown take part in an hour-long stoppage.
“We are meeting with the employers tomorrow at their request in order, hopefully, to hear from them how we might resolve this issue,” says Lloyd Woods, ASMS Senior Industrial Officer.
“Our job, as advocates, is to find a way forward. Unfortunately, we can’t hold high hopes, given they have expressly said that they prefer not to discuss the main issue – coverage of our dentist members in the collective agreement.
“It is a very simple issue from our perspective. We have two members of the wider medical team who are union members and want to be covered by the collective agreement; the employer has said no, and that is unacceptable to us, particularly in the absence of any real reason being given. Strike action has only been taken as the only available way to have our concerns heard,” Mr Woods says.
“It’s hard to imagine a good outcome, given the employers’ refusal to discuss coverage. However, our members are hopeful Ora Toa patients will get a Christmas present – their GPs being available on 24 December and having the wider medical team that looks after them recognised as just that, a team.”