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Nurses to strike over Tasmanian public sector pay offer

Tasmanian teachers and nurses will strike for better pay as the state government refuses to budge on its two per cent offer.

The Liberal government's proposed increase was refused by unions in their bid for greater wage parity with the rest of the country.

A meeting with Premier Will Hodgman on Thursday failed to find common ground, with parties due back at the negotiation table with the next fortnight.

"The government will not go into deficit by borrowing to fund unaffordable wage rises which would lead to an unsustainable budget position," Hodgman said.

"We strongly urge unions not to disrupt Tasmanians through industrial action, particularly while negotiations remain active."

The Tasmanian branch of the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation attended the meeting in hope of overcoming the impasse over the public sector pay rise.

With no agreement on the table, members will refuse to work in theatres across the island state for two hours next Thursday, while other areas pause for an hour in the afternoon.

Australian Education Union Tasmania state branch manager Roz Madsen said Hodgman seems "genuinely interested in understanding the issues" educators face, but would push ahead with plans for half-hour stop-work meetings on Monday.

"It is not about the size of the budget deficit or surplus but education is always a priority issue. Three per cent would only just get our most experienced teachers temporarily off the bottom of the lowest paid teachers in the country," she said.

The union has given the government until February 12 to show "significant improvement in negotiations" or potentially face more work stoppages.

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