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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 3 Hansard (8 March) . . Page.. 858 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

work 12 hours and some can work eight hours. That is what we want to do." I said, "If you can find a flexible way to do it, I am quite comfortable about that."

Mr Berry: Who said that-the union or some nurses?

MR MOORE: No, not the union. There were nurses in intensive care who said that to me. I have a letter from a nurse who wants to go back and work at the Canberra Hospital when we have a shortage. My understanding is that she is in one of the specialist areas. She has a young family. She does not want to work eight hours. She wants to work four hours. There are peaks, and it could be very useful to management to be able bring somebody on for four hours-it does not change anybody else's shift-and get that flexibility. What is more, the agreement guaranteed that nobody would be forced to do anything other than the standard shift.

Mr Berry: Not yet.

MR MOORE: It is written down in the enterprise bargaining agreement, Mr Berry. You know that. You know how those agreements work. That is written down as a contract, effectively. If you want to change a contract, you have to go about it in a way that is above board, which is exactly what we did. We said in the middle of an enterprise bargaining agreement, "We are prepared to put up across the Canberra Hospital and Community Care $5.8 million, to give over the length of the package some $20 million." That is what we offered. And there is a reason for it: to do something about the very things you asked me about-the long shifts, the double shifts and the shortage of nurses, particularly in specialist areas.

Mr Berry: What about the temporary level 2 nurses? Is that a good idea? Do they love that?

MR SPEAKER: Stop interjecting, Mr Berry, please.

MR MOORE: The sad part is that it will work well at Calvary Hospital but, if the nurses union stop this going to a vote, it will not happen at the Canberra Hospital. We will not be able to do those things. Fundamentally, this is about a democratic vote.

Mr Corbell: The union decides.

MR SPEAKER: You stop interjecting too, Mr Corbell.

MR MOORE: If you want to know not what the union thinks but what-

Mr Berry: It is a democracy.

MR SPEAKER: I warn you, Mr Berry.

Mr Corbell: The union are the members.

MR SPEAKER: I warn you, Mr Corbell.

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