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More talks for SA nurses

Negotiations resume as government agrees to “genuine talks”.

South Australian nurses have suspended industrial action over staffing levels and resumed negotiations with the state government on a new enterprise agreement.

Nurses recently accepted a 15 per cent pay rise over three years but remained at odds with the government over other issues, including staffing levels in hospitals, professional development and career structures.

Last week the imposed work bans, which included turning off hospital computers that controlled staffing numbers.

But the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation said on Friday enterprise agreement negotiations would resume this week after the government agreed to put aside the negative aspects of its latest offer.

SA branch secretary Elizabeth Dabars said the government had committed to holding genuine talks on the outstanding issues.

“As a result, we have agreed to suspend all industrial action in relation to our claims whilst genuine and good faith bargaining on the critical matters remaining in dispute continues," Dabars said.

"We have, however, resolved to reserve our right to reimpose the level of industrial action without notice in the event that negotiations are not conducted in good faith or, with notice, if they fail to reach an acceptable conclusion."

Dabars said nurses and midwives were acutely aware of the dangers associated with uncertainty on safe staffing levels.

"It is essential to have the right person at the right time and for the right amount of time in order to provide safe care," she said.


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