Sydney was at Status 2 on Monday and at least status 1 Tuesday, with extended bed block, multiple emergency jobs with no response – the lot. The chances that paramedics caught a break during this was near zero. Risk to paramedic safety, both physically and psychologically, is extreme during these periods when there are more time-critical jobs than crews.
The West Sydney Nepean Blue Mountains Sector has funding for and requires five DOMs on day/afternoon shift. Delegates were informed last night that sector management is refusing to backfill at least one DOM vacancy, leaving struggling paramedics one or more DOMs down. This puts pressure on paramedics who rely on DOMs to assist in keeping them safe, but also to push back on workload demands if things are getting unreasonable.
DOMs themselves have horror shifts when their numbers are depleted, because they know that if they aren’t able to give each issue enough time, paramedics, patients, and the Service can suffer.
NSWA hasn’t told us why they wouldn’t backfill the vacancy – we hope it’s not about money. Regardless of the reason, ADHSU paramedics (including DOMs) have started to push back on NSWA’s continued corner-cutting and are taking a stand.
All Sydney DOMs immediately banned attending to hospital delays and non-paramedic safety related IMMSs. The management who refused the backfill will have to cover this work themselves.
This industrial action has spread to all ADHSU Sydney DOMs.
No individual member can be disciplined for taking authorised industrial action. If you hear the words ‘are you refusing duty’, please politely let the officer know you are adhering to ADHSU industrial action and that NSWA should take it up with the Union office.
If you continue to be threatened, ring your delegate immediately and a state-wide response to the intimidation will be implemented.