No milk today

21 Nov 2007 archivemedia

While the Rann Government is happy to spend $100,000 on a tram line opening party, it’s too tight to supply milk to staff at mental health facility James Nash House.

It was revealed in parliament today that nursing staff at JNH have been told to bring in their own milk, along with receipts to verify that they actually did purchase it themselves.

“That’s bureaucracy gone silly,” Shadow Mental Health Minister Michelle Lensink said.

“Staff at James Nash work long and difficult hours so it’s a bit tough to ask them to duck out for a carton of milk,” Ms Lensink said.

Parliament’s Legislative Council was told today

Nursing staff will no longer be provided with milk. If staff wish to bring their own into work, they must bring a receipt or else action may be taken.

The instruction was issued by officials at Glenside.

Nursing staff do 12 hour shifts - 7 til 7. For operational/security reasons (i.e. in case of emergency) they are not allowed to exit the facility until the end of their shift. That makes it especially difficult for self-providing nursing staff to "duck out for a carton of milk".

Ms Lensink said the instruction was yet another example of low morale and poor leadership within the public sector, as identified in Commissioner for Public Employment Jeff Walsh’s 2007 annual report.

“It’s Public Sector Week this week and while it seeks to showcase the good work done by the public sector, the milk saga is another example of the culture that has beset the service under the Rann Government.

“They make it difficult for people who are working very hard under tough budget restrictions.”