Hospital Staff Mull Half-Day Strike over Parking Fees

Mirage News, 13 February 2023

Hundreds of Concord Hospital workers will today rally and hold a mass meeting to consider a half day strike on Thursday, as anger mounts over an extortionate increase in parking fees costing them up to $2,600 a year.

The mass meeting of psychologists, scientists, theatre technicians, kitchen staff, cleaners, security guards will happen at Concord Hospital's main entrance from Midday today.

"For workers on a modest income, forking out $2,600 to simply turn up at work is a ghastly imposition," said HSU Secretary Gerard Hayes.

"This is a bizarre way to thank the people who kept the community safe during the Covid-19 pandemic. Amid surging rents, mortgage interest rates and two-dollar per litre petrol, the last thing anyone needs is to be slapped with extortionate parking fees.

"Staff are not some cash pinata that can be belted for spare change. Hospital executives need to get real."

Concord Hospital staff parking has been free since the Covid-19 pandemic but from February workers with parking permits will be charged $27.20 per week. This will cost them about $1,300 a year if they park five days a week, 48 weeks a year.

Staff who do not have a parking permit because they are still on a years-long waitlist to get one will be charged $11 a day, costing them about $2,600 a year.

Before Covid-19, parking was $12 a week for workers with permits, meaning fees are more than doubling from only a few years ago.

HSU members are calling on the hospital to not increase fees above the pre-Covid rate.