We’ll negotiate with union, says Netcare

Healthcare group Netcare on Friday said it was keen to soldier on in wage negotiations with the Democratic Nursing Association of SA (Denosa) until a solution was found.

“Netcare remains fully committed to its wage negotiations with Denosa,” the group’s human resources director Peter Warrener said.

“We remain optimistic that a mutually beneficial agreement will be reached.”

About 5 000 Denosa members on Friday threatened to strike after talks with Netcare failed. They attempted a dispute resolution process with the company at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), but could not come to an agreement.

The failed process brought an end to three months of negotiations between the two parties, with the employer placing a final offer of 7,75% on the table.

Denosa was granted a certificate to strike by the CCMA on Wednesday. Union spokesperson Asanda Fongqo said they were mobilising their members.

“If Netcare doesn’t come to the party between now and Monday, we will serve them with our intention to strike,” he said.

Denosa wants an 11% increase across the board, improved allowances and the opportunity to renegotiate new contract terms next year.

Meanwhile, members of the Health and Other Service Personnel Trade Union of SA (Hospersa) on Friday agreed to Netcare’s 7,75% annual wage increase offer.

Administrative, nursing and support employees in 18 business units in the hospital division would get the increase. Those earning a minimum salary would get a nine percent hike. Both increases would be backdated to March 1 2011. – Sapa

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