19 Mar 2007

Fiji nurses vote on possible strike

4:59 pm on 19 March 2007

The Fiji Nurses Association says it has started its secret balloting today over taking strike action over pay and conditions.

In its budget, the interim administration has announced pay cuts of five percent for all public servants and a reduced retirement age of 55.

The unions have vowed they won't accept this and are now holding secret ballots.

The Public Servants Union has already a mandate from its members to take strike action, while the Teachers Union is currently counting the votes.

The Nurses Association's general secretary, Kuini Lutua, says nurses have just started voting.

"We have just started on our secret balloting. The results of that, we will have to await our postal ballot which should be completed by the 28."

All negotiations with the interim administration have stopped, but Kuini Lutua says she hopes that they will resume.

The public sector member unions are expected to meet soon to announce their united stand on what action to take.