If you’re a NSW Health Service worker that’s been holding out for some PS5 money, then now’s your time to shine. Cause the NSW Government is giving these employees a $3,000 appreciation payment.
This one-off cash splash will be given to NSW Health Service staff members as a way of thanking them for the incredible work that they did throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the government’s press release, this payment won’t just be provided to the likes of paramedics, it’ll also be given to its hard-working midwives, cleaners, and every other NSW Health Service employee.
As per Seven News, this scheme was announced by NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet at Liverpool Hospital on June 6. He said, “We’ll be making a $3000 payment in appreciation for all our health workers, for the sacrifices they have made over the last two years.” Perrottet additionally noted that this amount of money was also a gesture of appreciation which acknowledges how difficult this year’s flu season will be for every NSW Health Service employee.
The NSW Minister for Employee Relations, Damien Tudehope, expressed a very similar sentiment to Perrottet when discussing this one-off payment. In the government’s press release, he expressed, “The health workforce went to extraordinary lengths during the pandemic and has earned the admiration and gratitude of the entire state.”
However, as mint as this scheme is, some don’t think it goes far enough. For instance, HelloCare noted that frontline aged care workers aren’t eligible to receive this payment. Additionally, the NSW Teachers Federation’s Angelo Gavrielatos wasn’t happy that NSW school workers weren’t receiving a similar appreciation payment for their work during the pandemic. According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the fact that this hand was only extended to NSW Health Service employees had “not been missed by any teacher.”
It’s also worth noting that some NSW Health Service workers are dubious of the government’s motives. A nurse named Alice Moon told The Latch, “I think it’s a voting ploy for the election next year.” She also questioned why the government’s only just now providing this one-off payment, as she’s worked for such a very long time on the frontline.
Update: Victoria Is Following Suit
On June 9, the Victorian Government announced that it was also giving away some cash to its health care workers. This comes in the form of the Healthcare Worker Winter Retention and Surge Payment, a $353 million package that’ll give every staff member working in public hospitals and in ambulance services an extra $3000. Moreover, this scheme will also provide overnight workers free meals from July until 2022 ends.
When discussing this program, Premier Daniel Andrews said, “Our people are our health system’s greatest asset and this is just one way for us to recognise and support their efforts and ensure nurses, doctors, paramedics, allied health and support staff are there when we need them most.”
But it’s worth noting that this scheme doesn’t cover private health care workers. This has inspired the unions to ask private health care providers to give some extra money to their employees. The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation’s Lisa Fitzpatrick said in an article by SBS, “It’s time that the private acute care employers stepped up and recognised their amazing staff in the way that the state government has done.”