Local hospital workers on the front line of the fight against COVID-19 have been given a timely boost in the form of free all-day parking.
In a move instigated by the Health Services Union, staff working at Lismore Base Hospital will be able to park for free for the foreseeable future after Lismore Council agreed to exempt them from all parking charges.
Tweed Shire Council also confirmed that it will not enforce parking restrictions in place in the streets surrounding public hospitals until further notice.
‘This crisis is placing enormous pressure on the health workforce,’ Health Services Union (HSU) Secretary Gerard Hayes said.
‘Parking costs can be quite significant for local hospital workers, and particularly for lower paid workers like kitchen staff and cleaners.
‘Access to free parking will lift some of that pressure and be a moral boost for those workers.’
Last week the HSU wrote to Mayors in Northern NSW seeking their support for free council parking for all health workers during the COVID-19 crisis.
Mr Hayes thanked Lismore Mayor Isaac Smith and Tweed Mayor Katie Milne for their quick and decisive responses to the HSU’s request.
‘These Mayors are clearly listening to the needs of their communities,’ Mr Hayes said.
‘We’ll keep pushing for other councils in northern NSW to remove parking restrictions for local health workers.’
The HSU has also successfully lobbied the NSW State Government to provide free on-site parking for hospital workers.