Tuesday, April 16, 2024

NZNO thanks departing Health Chair

The New Zealand Nurses Organisation, Tōpūtanga Tapuhi Kaitiaki o Aotearoa (NZNO) has acknowledged the “hard mahi” of sacked Te Whatu Ora Health NZ Chair, Rob Campbell, on behalf of the nation’s nurses.

NZNO Chef Executive, Paul Goulter said Mr Campbell (pictured) was a person who spoke his mind, and advocated for nurses and their causes, even when such comments were not always welcome.

“Mr Campbell regularly spoke about the worrying shortage of nursing staff and took our concerns about issues such as pay equity for nurses and frontline resourcing seriously,” said Mr Goulter.

“He was an outspoken critic of the Government’s bewildering refusal to put internationally qualified nurses on the fast track to residency and was firmly committed to te Tiriti partnership in health.

“Mr Campbell strongly believed in the principles embedded in the Pae Ora legislation, especially the principle of working in Tiriti partnership to achieve equity in the lives of all people in Aotearoa New Zealand.”

Mr Goulter said health workers had lost a powerful and important advocate and he wished Health Minister, Ayesha Verrall, well in finding a replacement.

“At a time of reform and uncertainty, it will be important for her to appoint a successor who is willing to work equally hard in the interests of our frontline health workers who desperately require both recognition and support.” 

Mr Campbell’s role as Chair was brought to an end following his public comments about the Government’s Three Waters policy.

Prime Minister, Chris Hipkins described the statements as “inappropriate” before Health Minister, Ayesha Verrall, took swift action, removing Mr Campbell from his role.

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