It’s a disgrace that Southern Cross Care in three states are cutting nursing and carer hours, and in Tasmania, in an unprecedented step, members have voted to take industrial action.
Southern Cross Care are blaming the federal government for the cuts to nursing and care hours, saying that the $1.2 billion in cuts from the ACFI funding means that they have no choice but to reduce care hours. | Read news story
Federal Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt has placed responsibility for Southern Cross Care Queensland's extensive cuts to nursing hours directly on the organisation.
The real problem is that the Federal Government has not mandated staffing levels or care hours in aged care
Southern Cross are not alone in cutting nursing and care hours in aged care. The real problem is the Federal Government allows providers to decide ‘appropriate’ levels of care under the Aged Care Act 1997. Whilst the provider must provide appropriate levels of care to meet the needs of the residents, it is becoming increasingly common for hours and care to be cut.
The Blame game means our residents are hurt the most
When hours of care are cut, or rosters reduced, the level of care delivered to frail and vulnerable residents must be affected. Less nurses, fewer carers, reduced hours can only mean less care.
ANMF Federal Secretary Lee Thomas, a former aged care worker, knows exactly what the cuts mean. “Fewer and fewer care staff will be employed, or they'll have their work hours dramatically reduced, resulting in a compromised level of care for residents.”
Elderly nursing home residents, nursing and care staff are the victims of the “blame game” between Southern Cross Care (SCC) and the Federal Government over a decision by SCC to slash over 2000 crucial nursing hours from its aged care facilities. | Read media release
Do you have information about staffing cuts, hours reductions, roster changes or changes happening where you work? Take our survey to tell us about those cuts/changes and how they are impact. You can also email us directly on this link, and upload any documents you would like us to look at. Anything that you submit will be confidential.
The Providers can no longer be trusted
The Government is abrogating their responsibility if they do not step in and ensure that the funding they provide is enough to guarantee that vulnerable residents receive decent, safe care which must include minimum staffing requirements for nurses and carers. We can no longer trust the facilities to simply tick a box and say they provide 'adequate' care.
Blue Care residents need more nurses, not less!
Serious concerns have been raised by the Queensland Nurses and Midwives Union about the quality of care for residents at three Bundaberg aged care homes following news staff numbers are being cut. | Read article
Southern Cross Care have a patchy record
- Canberra Hospital urges investigation into Southern Cross Care nursing home
- Southern Cross Care rest home in Garran breached standards in government audit
Southern Cross Care Qld
In Queensland alone, Southern Cross Care is proposing to slash more than 2800 hours of care per fortnight from at least eight of its nursing homes.
Southern Cross Care Tasmania
In Tasmania, following the ANMF media release and branch action, qualified carers hourly rates have just been raised to $21.26 per hours, 7 cents per hour higher than the award. This minimal increase was made without the previously agreed backpay.
Members at Southern Cross Care have just voted overwhelmingly in favour of taking protected industrial action in pursuit of fair conditions and a reasonable wage increase above the award minimum as part of enterprise bargaining negotiations.
Southern Cross Care South Australia
In South Australia, ANMF Members employed at Southern Cross are also fighting against a reduction to staffing hours across five sites.
The Branch has notified a dispute to the Fair Work Commission.
The response from Southern Cross Care
Southern Cross Care Queensland CEO Peter Bell has previously defended the cuts, saying they were necessary to the long-term viability of the organisation. He has also said there will be "no reduction in care" as a result of changes.
Read the news stories: