Exhausted Melbourne Doctor Furious After Getting Parking Ticket While Treating 'Sickest Patients'
When you're on the frontline of the coronavirus trying to make sick people feel a little better, one of the last things you want to get is a parking ticket.
While local councils have given out thousands of free parking slips, many workers have missed out and hope they won't be stung by a parking inspector.
Anaesthetic registrar Katarina Arandjelovic, who works at Royal Melbourne Hospital, was one of those people and couldn't believe her eyes when she finished a brutal set of shifts to find the familiar slip on the front of her car.
Dear @cityofmelbourne @SallyCapp_- Katarina Arandjelovic (@KArandjelovic) August 10, 2020
I am a doctor at the Royal #Melbourne ICU.
I worked 56 hours over four days in helping look after some of our state's sickest patients.
At 10pm last night, I left work to find a fine on my car dashboard. pic.twitter.com/sA1oKE21lB
Writing on Twitter, the doctor called out the City of Melbourne for having parking inspectors fine cars that are next to a hospital during Stage 4 lockdown.
Dr Arandjlovic said: "I worked 56 hours over four days in helping look after some of our state's sickest patients. At 10pm last night, I left work to find a fine on my car dashboard.
"The day before lockdown, my bike was stolen from outside this hospital.
Public transport is off-limits to prevent exposure to the virus, and transmission to colleagues and patients.
Your 'free permits' are long gone. There were too few to begin with. Many missed out.
"In lockdown, who do you think is parking in the streets by the hospital? It is the doctors, nurses, orderlies, pharmacists, physios, technicians, cleaners, cooks, ward clerks. So when you send a parking inspector to Parkville, know that it is these people you are targeting."
Katarina said staff at hospitals across the state are 'working their butts off' during this second wave of coronavirus infections.
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After posting her issue to Twitter, loads of people said they would happily pay the fine to say thank you to her for her hard work during the pandemic.
Hi Katarina, I was sorry to see this thread. I can't speak for the City of Melbourne and thier policies. However, if you will allow it, I'll happily pay the fine on your behalf.- Shane (@SPQR_2704) August 10, 2020
The thread eventually got a reply from the City of Melbourne.
"Hi Katarina, vehicles parked in residential parking areas with red signs are still subject to restrictions. We recognise the invaluable work our health workers are doing, that's why we've issued 9900 parking passes to frontline workers, including to the Royal Melbourne Hospital," the City of Melbourne said.
The issue of the fine has even attracted criticism from Premier Daniel Andrews.
He said at a press conference: "I don't think that someone who was in there, literally saving lives, should be the subject of a parking ticket. I will follow that up."
It appears the issue has been dealt with, according to Deputy Lord Mayor City of Melbourne Arron Wood.
He replied to Katarina's thread, saying: "Confirming from city of Melb admin review this fine will be withdrawn and any payment refunded. Apologies Katarina you've had to go through this, but hopefully your story will mean we get the permit system working better for all frontline workers. We need to do better."
Featured Image Credit: Katarina Arandjelovic/Twitter
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