'Historic' pay equity deal reached for these workers

'10,000 mostly women workers will at last receive pay that recompenses them for their labour, not their gender'

'Historic' pay equity deal reached for these workers

A "historic" pay equity settlement has been reached for health administration roles in New Zealand following the approval of district health boards (DHBs) and clerical workers.

It covers 10,000 workers, majority of whom a women, who have been underpaid in the past. According to the Public Service Association (PSA), the settlement will grant some of these workers pay rises of up to 40%.

"Ten thousand mostly women workers will at last receive pay that recompenses them for their labour, not their gender," said PSA national sector leader Sue McCullough in a statement.

DHB spokesperson Jim Green said the development has been "enormous undertaking to get to this point," following four years of negotiation among the parties involved.

"Over 90% of the people in these key administration and clerical roles are women, and their work has been historically undervalued – this settlement puts it right," said Green as quoted by Stuff.

It will also be the first time that administration and clerical staff across New Zealand will receive the same pay for doing the same work, according to the PSA.

"This day will go down in history. PSA has been fighting for equal pay for work of equal value for women workers since 1913," said PSA national secretary Kerry Davies in a statement.

"The equal pay settlement for administration and clerical workers in DHBs is another step in a long journey. Each step has a concrete and inter-generational effect for the workers it covers, and that's worth celebrating!"

Read more: District Health Board member resigns after criticising Countdown's vaccine mandate

In a statement, Health Minister Andrew Little said the settlement is a "direct result" of the government's commitment to paying workers fairly.

"There is no place in 21st century Aotearoa New Zealand for 1950s attitudes to work predominantly carried out by women," said Little in a statement.

"Congratulations to everyone involved in getting this historic agreement over the line, and I look forward to more."

The settlement came a day after 10,000 allied health workers walked out of their duties due to a separate pay claim, which still remains under negotiation among involved parties.

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