There are so many posts I want to write, and so little time, because RL has rudely shoved itself in the way of my e-life for a bit. In my head, among many other things, are: the by-election for the seat of Melbourne; the many promises of the many candidates running, and the likelihood that they’ll be able to meet their promises; the are-you-kidding? utterances of Federal Opposition leader Tony Abbott; an update of the partisan nature of Australian mainstream media; the strike by Toll-employed sub-contracted COles workers, who are nine days into a strike that’s having significant ramifications; a reflection on my recent ANF job rep refresher training; occupational health, safety, and nursing/midwifery work load; and a little rant on the inability of my non-medical siblings to accept that I know what I’m talking about when it comes to sick people (that would be part of the RL interruption).

Tonight’s post, though, is a quick huzzah for another ANF victory – this time it’s the Royal District Nursing Service’s EBA, which was voted on and passed by RDNS members at a meeting this afternoon. There were significant gains from RDNS management’s initial position – a comparison table can be found here.

Another hard-fought campaign won – now there’s only the mental health EBA to go, and there’s a members meeting tomorrow that I’m hopefully will see a resolution. Then ANF can focus on the remaining private institution EBAs to go. Well that, suppoting our fellow unions, and all the every day things that have been sidelined for months thanks to the stubborn and tenacious resistance of the Baillieu government and its agents to cooperate and negotiate. And yes – I’m thinking of sputum when I type “tenacious”.

It’s 864 days until the next state election (and that number drops in just over half an hour). It’s anywhere between twelve and sixteen months until the Federal election. And it’s three days until the by-election for the seat of Melbourne, held by Labor for 104 years.

In every case, when you vote I ask that you think about who will serve nurses, midwives and the health and welfare of the Victorian public best. I know many people are disenchanted with the ALP, and are looking at alternatives. I also know that the LNP will be a no-question option for some. Politics is complicated and often personal, and one of the many advantages of living in a free society is the right to case your ballot as you see fit. I just ask that, before you do so, you think not only of the promises the candidates make but also the history, policies and actions of their party, and the likelihood that they’ll be able to carry out the commitments they’ve made.