HSU members working in public health have claimed an historic victory, as the NSW Government on Good Friday finally announced free parking for health workers in NSW Health facilities.
A struggle of gargantuan proportions, the fight against extortionate parking fees has been ongoing for a number of years. A significant portion of members’ pay packets was claimed each week just for the simple right to park at work. In some cases, significant safety issues arose when members were forced to park some distance from work and make their way to and from their cars in the dark. HSU members strongly oppose the profiteering motive behind charging health workers and the public such excessive amounts, ask the simple question ‘why should such essential workers have to pay to park at work?’
Minister for Health the Hon. Brad Hazzard MP made the announcement alongside Gerard Hayes, HSU Secretary, a recognition of the role the HSU has played in lobbying for this decision. He also underlined that the NSW Government would welcome the cooperation of local councils in not penalising health workers for on-street parking near health facilities – something the HSU has been actively pursuing with councils around NSW. You can check to see if your local council has agreed to the HSU’s request at www.hsu.asn.au/free-parking-for-health-workers Given the long and hard campaign members have fought, the elation at the government’s announcement was hardly surprising.
Health workers will now have considerably more in their own pockets thanks to the tireless campaigning of HSU members. It’s important to note that the Government has not provided an end date to the arrangement. The HSU will be campaigning to ensure that free hospital parking remains in place after the COVID-19 pandemic has passed. Our heroic health workers should not have to pay to park at their workplace. The HSU isn’t just campaigning in public health, either.
The Private Health Division has launched a petition to private health operators to stop charging their workers exorbitant fees, which you can sign at https://bit.ly/private-health-parking.