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Gerard has been deeply involved with the Health Services Union and the NSW Health system for 30 years. He initially served as an Intensive Care paramedic with the New South Wales Ambulance Service and during this time became a delegate for the HSU. After 15 years he became an official of the Health Services Union and is now the State Secretary.
Gerard’s personal experience with the health system in Australia has led him to a thorough and ongoing assessment of the effect of privatisation of public health services on patients, health workers and communities.
Gerard’s keen wish is to improve the lives of health, aged care and disability workers, both at home and at work. Since he was elected Secretary, the HSU leadership team has: introduced Journey Insurance and Emergency Ambulance Cover for members, both at no extra cost to members; reduced membership fees; wiped out the Union’s significant debt; defeated several privatisation proposals, including the selloff of five regional NSW hospitals; fought for the proper funding of aged care and the fair remuneration of aged care workers; defeated attempts to strip Death & Disability protections from paramedics; and grown the Union’s membership to over 43,000 members.
He’s only just started.
Lynne Russell has had a long career in health, starting in 1981 as a casual employee in food services at Wallsend Hospital. She joined HAREA (as the HSU was then known) on the very day she started work. As Lynne’s mother was the hospital’s sub branch secretary, and her father an active CFMEU delegate, you might say she has union blood running in her veins.
Lynne was first spurred to take a more active role in the union when it became known that Wallsend Hospital would be threatened with closure. She decided to step up and take action. This lit the fire in her belly and she’s been campaigning against injustice ever since.
When Wallsend eventually closed, Lynne moved over to John Hunter Hospital and joined the sub branch. She was elected secretary of the sub branch in 1995, became state and national councillor of the HSU in 1997, and a member of the HSU executive in 1999.
As the HSU’s first female Assistant Secretary in its 107-year history, Lynne is a proud advocate for change and a strong believer in more women in leadership roles. She is excited for what the future brings.
Mark Sterrey knows how hard working in the health sector can be for ordinary HSU members. Mark has worked in the health sector for 34 years. After being a local delegate for many years, he knows that issues of job security, rosters, overtime, pay and safety are important for members. As President, Mark helps to ensure that the decisions made are the right ones for the members and the Union.
Senior Vice President
"In my role as vice president I want to see open and honest leadership and to make sure that everybody does the right thing by the members. I want to see the members well-informed and secure in the knowledge that the union is out there fighting for them.” - Lindy.
When we stand together, our voices can’t be ignored. Join today and stand with over 45,000 workers in health, ambulance, aged care, disability care, and private health!