The Cessnock Advertiser's Letters to the Editor: June 30, 2021

Letters to the Editor: June 30


Recently frontline workers such as nurses and midwives have been taking action in response to the NSW state government's latest wage offer.

After only receiving 0.3% for their work keeping us safe during the pandemic, the state government's latest offer of 1.5% was almost as insulting.

To make matters worse, the state government is also expecting nurses and midwives to pay for their own federal government-mandated superannuation increase, meaning their wage increase would actually be 1.04%.

The state government is now trying to claim credit, back-flipping on the 1.5% offer, and confirming it would return to the 2.5% cap that it has used over the past 10 years to reject any further improvements to nurses and midwives working conditions, and in-turn better care for patients.

But a cap is still a cap. If you speak to any nurse or midwife they will tell you they are frustrated more by their unsafe working conditions and inability to look after their patients than anything else.

Recent peer-reviewed research showed that the nurse-to-patient ratios introduced by the Queensland state government in 2016 saved 145 lives and millions of dollars in their first year of introduction.

When will the NSW state government realise that not only do nurse-to-patient ratios save lives, but they also save money?

Emily Suvaal (registered nurse), Cessnock


The end of June is just around the corner, which means it's time to ditch the booze for a month and tackle Dry July!

The Dry July campaign is run by the Dry July Foundation to support cancer charities, including Cancer Council.

By going dry this July and fundraising on behalf of Cancer Council, you'll help us continue to provide our vital 13 11 20 Cancer Information and Support Line for all Australians affected by cancer.

If you've ever thought about doing Dry July but haven't taken the plunge yet, now is a great time to do it. Every year, Cancer Council provides support to more than 250,000 people across the country, so that no one has to go through cancer alone.

Our latest estimates show that by 2040, the number of Australians with a personal history of cancer will increase by 72 per cent to 1.9 million. This means in the coming years, services like 13 11 20 will be needed more than ever before.

There's also a host of health benefits to quitting drinking for a month, including reducing your cancer risk. In fact, it's estimated that around three per cent of all cancers diagnosed in Australia each year are due to alcohol use.

To register, visit If you're impacted by cancer and need emotional or practical support, please reach out to us by calling 13 11 20.

Jennifer Birks, Campaigns Unit Manager, Cancer Council NSW

  • HAVE YOUR SAY: Send your letters to the editor to, or by post to The Advertiser, Level 1, Suite 2/12 Elgin Street, Maitland NSW 2320. Letters must include your name and suburb and a phone number for verification purposes.