Illustration photo is used by a real agency.
Illustrations and commentary from candobetter.net. Although this article comes from a petition, (which already has 27,222 supporters) the article explaining it, by Esther Inglis of Brisbane, Australia is fantastic. I would only add to it that it is not just graduates who are suffering. This rort and scandal needs to be blown out of the water in Australia. The absolute shamelessness of careerists currently running hospitals all over the country, who dump on their colleagues and on students merits that you cut dead most people in hospital management on suspicion that they are part of this outrageous behaviour towards ordinary RNs and trainee nurses. Hospitals and managers are getting bonuses for bringing in foreign nurses and getting them to sign up with universities to do Masters and Phd's in nursing at great expense to the immigrants and enormous cost to wider Australian society. And while this is going on many excellent nurses with years of experience are now unable to find work. They cannot afford to compete with cashed up professional immigrants for post graduate university courses that have become quasi-mandatory to get some short term job in nursing. And, as imported nurses sit at their desks and do full time higher degree courses just in order to keep their positions and fulfill their contracts, the wards are filled with new rapidly trained kinds of 'care-workers', and a few overworked Division 2s, doing jobs that real RNs once did. Can this be good for anyone? Tony Abbott complains about the cost of health care, but he has nothing to say about this - naturally. I really don't think it is necessary to add that I have nothing against foreign nurses, however I will. What I am against is destroying the reasonable expectations of employment of nurses born here. It is so cruel, unnecessary and shameful. The unions are doing nothing, nor are the schools of nursing; they are just shamefully taking the money for membership and courses, like the cowards they are. So try signing this petition and send it around everywhere.
Article by Esther Inglis, first appeared on Change.org.
You can sign the petition here:
Getting a job is competitive, getting a job as a graduate even more so. Faced with proposed changes to the federal budget, it is a bleak outlook for the thousands of nursing graduates each year, who are desperate to be employed but are often losing out on job opportunities to experienced nurses recruited by hospitals/facilities on 457 visas.
There was a shortage in nurses, but now even skilled nurses are finding it difficult to find work. Though this issue has many dimensions, graduate nurses are most at risk of losing out to foreign experienced nurses. Graduate nurses are our future, initiatives need to be in place to ensure they are placed in employment upon completion of their degrees, otherwise the future of Australian nursing will again be faced with shortages of nurses.
The federal budget will make unemployed life very difficult, especially considering that many nurse graduates are under 30 years of age and will not qualify for unemployment benefits for 6 months.
The proportion of international nurses on 457 visas hired each year is comparable to the proportion of nurse graduates who find themselves unable to find work. How are we meant to transition from graduate into experienced nurses, if the opportunities to work, experience and refine our skills is not available to us.
The federal and state governments need to work out where our health and employment system is falling short and failing graduate nurses, who previously had excellent job prospects upon graduation. Initiatives to hire graduates need to be implemented immediately, so we can get out foot in the door and have options for our futures.
We have studied and trained extremely hard to be there in your hours of greatest need… we know that you will help us now in ours. Please support our petition to have this issue reviewed and action taken by the government.
Nationally, a breakdown of unemployed graduates reveal the state of the industry:
SA: The ANMF estimates that in South Australia alone, 280 nurse and midwife graduates were unable to secure jobs after university last year.
QLD: Only 600 of 2500 nursing graduates were able to secure jobs this year.
TAS: 60 per cent of nursing graduates were unable to find work last year.
VIC: 800 nurse and midwife graduates were unable to secure employment last year.
NSW: The ANMF says the NSW public hospital sector is the largest employer of nurses on 457 visas.
(source Australian Federation of Nursing and Midwifery)
Scott Morrison, Minister for Immigration and Border Protection
Senator Eric Abetz, Federal Minister for Employment
Peter Dutton, Federal Minister for Health
Luke Hartsuyker, Assistant Minister for Employment
Kate Ellis, Shadow Minister for Education
Catherine King, Shadow Minister for Health
Lawrence Springborg, State Minister for Health - Queensland
John-Paul Langbroek, State Minister for Education, Training & Employment - Queensland
Curtis Pitt, Shadow State Minister for Employment - Queensland
Jo-Ann Miller, Shadow State Minister for Health - Queensland
Richard Marles, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Border Protection
Review 457 visas for international nurses. In my home state of Queensland, only one quarter of graduate nurses last year have gained positions, this is a scary prospect for nursing students.
With the changes to the federal budget, we cannot afford to be out of work, especially as graduates with no experience. The age of entitlement is over, though many of us cannot even get a foot in the door to put food on our tables.
Whilst we value and respect the work of international nurses working in Australia on 457 visas, we need to make sure that we are not being passed over and have every opportunity to enter the workforce and build our skill base with valuable hospital experience.
The rate of graduate nurses unemployed is similar to the intake of international nurses, so we know the work is there, we just need our government to tighten the regulations on these visas and give us a fighting chance to start off our careers!