Nurses begin voting on whether to back a nationwide strike today, even as an independent panel attempts to resolve the pay dispute. Some 27,000 hospital nurses will receive ballot papers online and by post from today and begin voting on the strike. An independent panel met for the first time last week to resolve the pay impasse between nurses and their employers. The nurses' union flagged the strikes plan during the panel process and confirmed it last week. The two possible day-long strikes were proposed for 5 and 12 July.
The Nurses Organisation union expected to know the result by 25 May, which would be not long after it receives a new pay offer from DHBs following the panel's work. Nurses said strikes would be a last resort. The DHBs said they understood and were committed to exploring all options for a settlement.
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