Now seeking participants!

We are pleased to confirm that the meals pilot to trial a meal allowance will be extended for another 12 months and continue for the 2024 RMO training year.

STONZ members working in a participating district in the 2024 training year have the option to participate in the pilot. This will include;

  • An allowance of $6025 per annum, pro-rated for each participating RMO paid on a fortnightly basis with their salary.

  • The allowance will be in lieu of the standard meal provision provided by the district.

  • RMOs participating in the pilot will not be able to access meals through the standard district process, with the exception of meals on overnight shifts which will continue to be provided by the District.

  • The pilot is on an opt-in basis, with the expectation that RMOs would participate for the duration unless by exception.

  • RMOs participating will be asked to complete a survey at the beginning, mid-way and the end of the pilot.

  • All other terms and conditions of employment will remain the same.

The pilot provides an opportunity for us to jointly identify the benefits and challenges of implementing a meal allowance and inform further discussion on potential alternatives to the current meal provisions. Feedback will be sought from RMOs and Districts throughout the pilot.

The pilot was agreed as an outcome of the last STONZ & Te Whatu Ora bargaining, noting STONZ surveyed members in 2021 with approximately 50% of respondents indicating they would prefer to be paid an allowance rather than receive a meal subject to certain protections.

Outlined below are the confirmed Te Whatu Ora – Health New Zealand pilot districts

Action Required

  • To opt into the pilot please register your interest by contacting your District Pilot Lead noted above

  • If you do not wish to participate, the current collective agreement provisions for meals will remain in place and no action is required

Meal Pilot FAQs

How long is the pilot for?

The pilot commenced on 30 January 2023.

Originally it was scheduled to wrap up at the end of the 2023 training year, 28 January 2024. It has now been extended for the 2024 training year so will now finish on 26 January 2025.

Do I have to participate in the pilot?

No – this is on an opt-in basis. If you choose not to participate, there will be no changes to your terms and conditions, and you will continue to access your meals through the district.

Who can participate in the pilot?

Any STONZ members at one of the participating Districts.

Can I participate in the pilot if my district is not listed as one of the participating districts?

No – only STONZ members at the participating districts can partake.

Once I have opted into the pilot, can I opt out?

The intention is that if you opt in to participate in the pilot, you cannot opt-out part way through. However, there may be individual circumstances where an exception to this would apply and this can be discussed with your district lead.

If I am transferring to a District not participating in the pilot part way through the 2024 training year, can I still participate?

Yes, however when you transfer out of a participating district the meal allowance payment will stop and will not be carried over to your new district. Clause 20.5 of the STONZ RMO Collective Agreement would apply at your new district.

If I am commencing parental leave or leave without pay part way through the training year, can I still participate?

Yes, however, when you commence parental leave or leave without pay the meal allowance payment will stop.

If I work part-time or am on a reduced FTE, can I participate in the pilot?

Yes – your meal allowance will be pro-rated.

If I am receiving a meal allowance, can I still access free meals from the staff cafeteria?

No – you cannot access free meals from the staff cafeteria. The meal allowance is in lieu of a meal which means you can choose to purchase a meal from the staff cafeteria or elsewhere or you can provide your own meal/s. The exception to this is overnight, where RMOs working night duties will be provided with a meal from their District throughout the pilot.

How will the meal allowance be paid?

The meal allowance will be paid fortnightly with your salary, noting the allowance will be subject to PAYE tax.

Will the meal allowance be taxed?

Yes – the meal allowance is subject to PAYE tax and other deductions such as student loan payments and KiwiSaver.

Will I be paid the allowance when I work night duties?

Yes – the allowance will continue to be paid when you work night duties. However, your District will provide you with a meal overnight.

Will I be paid the allowance when I take leave?

The allowance will be paid when you take paid leave such as annual leave, medical education leave and senior registrar leave etc. This also includes situations where you utilise anticipated annual leave.

The allowance will not be paid if you are taking unpaid leave such as parental leave and leave without pay.

If I resign during the pilot will the remaining meal allowance be paid out?

No – if you resign, the meal allowance payments will stop when your employment ends.

How does the meal allowance impact my terms and conditions?

If you choose to participate in the pilot, Clause 20.5 of the STONZ RMO Collective Agreement will not apply throughout the period of the pilot and you will need to provide your own meal/s. The exception to this is overnight, where RMOs working night duties will be provided with a meal from their District throughout the pilot. All your other terms and conditions will remain the same.

Office Hours

Our normal office hours are 9am - 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.

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Contact us

Please get in touch with any questions you may have. We would love to hear from you.

P: 03 745 9258
PO Box 22656, Christchurch 8140

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