Paramedics defer re-registering with AHPRA until the NSW government offers a fair pay increase, recognising the professional advancements made by NSWA paramedics. At a stop work meeting on 14 September 2023, ADHSU paramedics agreed to take the most aggressive action since the 2I ban in 2021. This action is the culmination of years of campaigning by ADHSU members.
This FAQ document is also available as a downloadable flyer to distribute to your colleagues.
Why should I boycott re-registering this year?
Despite a promise from the Minns government to address paramedic professional recognition, he continues to defer pay in line with your clinical skills and practice. Why wouldn’t paramedics defer registering until that occurs? ADHSU have been pledging since September 15th to hold firm until Mr. Minns delivers.
For paramedics that have lapsed from the register, a fast-track application process is available for one month after the late registration period expires, between 1 January – 31 January. A fast-track application fee is payable in addition to the annual renewal fee. You should contact AHPRA as soon as possible to apply for a ‘fast-track’ application for registration if you wish to resume practice. You are unable to resume practice until your application is decided.
If the NSW government were acting wisely, they would not let this situation persist until January 1st. The political repercussions of a state without ambulance services would be devastating for Premier Minns.
How many of my colleagues have pledged to boycott?
The pledge is still open, but as of writing 1400+ paramedics have pledged to boycott re-registering this year.
What safety nets are in place?
The biggest safety net for members participating in the boycott is solidarity, what happens to one happens to all across the Ambulance Division. You will be one of thousands of people taking this action in pursuit of a win that will serve you for the rest of your career.
During the ADHSU Death & Disability Campaign in 2016, one paramedic was stood down for participating in action on road and immediately hundreds of paramedics requested to be stood down too. The stood down paramedic was reinstated within hours and offered an apology from the Service. Remember - the Service cannot run without ADHSU members.
Also, ADHSU DOMs, who represent over 85% of DOMs in the Ambulance Service have committed not to engage in any conversations with staff about their AHPRA registration status. This means members can be confident that even their frontline leadership support this action.
What happens closer to January 1st?
From January 1st, ADHSU members will continue to turn up to work ready for duty, only to be turned away by the Minns government on the basis that they want to continue paying NSW the lowest rates in Australia.
Further, an ADHSU 24/7 hotline will be established from late December for members to call at any time should they require any immediate support or advice regarding the boycott or their employment.
What are my legal protections?
In Australia, the Human Rights Commission Act protects you from being discriminated against for participating in union activity. If you are discriminated against for taking part in the ADHSU registration boycott, this is something members, delegates and the union office will pursue by all means necessary to resolve. No union member in this country or this state should face undue repercussions for fighting for their future in the workplace.
Will I lose my job?
Industrially, while being registered is an inherent requirement of your role, the Service cannot terminate you immediately for temporarily not being registered on January 1st. They must provide you reasonable warning and allow you time to comply with the inherent requirements of your role.
It is possible for the Service to terminate someone employed as a paramedic if they’re not AHPRA registered, however, this would mean losing thousands of paramedics during the holiday season. Standing down highly trained ADHSU paramedics is firmly against the interests of the NSW Government and the Ambulance Service.
Will my Professional Indemnity Insurance expire?
As a member of the HSU you have high level indemnity insurance that covers you as a clinician. While your membership remains current, you are covered. Insurance is unaffected by the boycott.
Okay, what is the timeline of this boycott?
AHPRA registration is due for renewal on November 30th, after this there is a one-month grace period through all of December, in which you can still practise with no issues. If you are still unregistered by January 1st you will not be able to practise. If any paramedic chooses to register after November 30th but before January 1st they will incur a $30 late fee. If it takes until January to win this fight, paramedics will need to pay a $60 fast-track fee to re-register then, on top of the normal registration fee.
What if the Government ignores this boycott?
The NSW Government is not ignoring this boycott. ADHSU delegates have worked hard to educate politicians from across the political spectrum about the implications of the registration boycott. Just recently, October 2023, the Government asked for an urgent update on the number of paramedics that have pledged to boycott registration and they know now that 1400+ paramedics have pledged to defer registration until a suitable offer is made.
What will it take for this boycott to be lifted?
Once an offer has been made by the Ministry of Health, delegates will convene to discuss whether the offer is good enough to put to members via a vote. Once a vote is concluded, if members are in favour of an offer, the boycott will end immediately and you should register proudly, as a fairly paid NSW paramedic.
NSWA cannot continue to have the lowest paid paramedics in Australia. This action will be the end of a long campaign to change that. Will you be part of making that change?