MNU supports promise to ban mandatory overtime!

Publish date: Wednesday, September 04, 2019

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Today, MNU President Darlene Jackson issued the following statement endorsing the commitment made by the Manitoba NDP to ban the use of mandatory overtime.

“On behalf of Manitoba’s Nurses we are proud to offer our full support for today’s commitment to legislate a ban on the use of mandatory overtime.

This is the strongest commitment we have seen during this election that shows a real understanding of the staffing challenges facing our health care system. Legislation like this would have a direct and positive impact for patient care, and for nurses providing that care.

The fact is forced overtime has been relied upon by employers and government to address staffing shortages that, in many instances, were created by government and employers. It’s an unsafe situation for patients and nurses alike, and nurses have been continually forced to cover for these repeated mistakes.

Certainly there are emergency situations where mandating may be required, and we recognize that such a ban would need to be phased in. Nurses will always be there for their patients. But that fact is, forcing nurses to work overtime because of health care cuts is unsafe and unfair. With a robust recruitment and retention plan, we believe a ban could be enacted within a four year timeframe. For any party serious about improving patient care and bringing more nurses into the system, banning mandatory overtime should be a top priority within a term in government.

This policy is also good for recruitment and retention, which has been hampered in recent years by cuts and excessive overtime. Nurses have repeatedly spoken out about how recent cuts and closures are chasing nurses out of a system that desperately needs more. This is a major step to correct the government’s relationship with nurses.”

- MNU President Darlene Jackson

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