Nurses want answers
THE reason the Valley's nurses are wearing this shirt is their demands are being ignored by the State Government.
President of the Grafton branch of the Nurses and Midwives' Association, Tyrone Dungey, said no progress had been made since the union began pro- testing in March this year.
Mr Dungey said a patient in a general medical or a surgical ward in Grafton Base Hospital gets five hours of nursing care a day, half-an-hour less than a patient in the same ward in Lismore Hospital and an hour less than in Sydney.
This Friday at 4pm Mr Dungey, many of his union colleagues and several members of the public will be going to the office of Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis to try to find out why.
Mr Gulaptis said he would not be there as he will be attending the AGM of a company he has shares in.
Mr Dungey said the responses the union had received so far indicated Mr Gulaptis did not understand what was happening.
"He seems a little confused about what's going on," Mr Dungey said.
"He keeps saying the union and the government are in negotiations but the fact is the government rejected all of our requests."
Mr Dungey said many nurses at the Valley's hospitals were very annoyed at the lack of progress.
Mr Gulaptis stood by the calls he had previously made on the issue and said nursing numbers were defined by a classification system the union agreed to two years ago.
He said he was not qualified to say if the system should be reformed.