Nurses strike still on as talks end without resolution

Nurses strike still on as talks end without resolution
Nurses protesting last year in Limerick. Pic: Press 22

The strike by nurses and midwives is on course to go ahead after talks trying to avert the industrial action ended without resolution today.

Members of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) are set to strike next Wednesday.

They are also set to stage 24-hour work stoppages on February 5 and 7.

This is the third day of the meeting between the INMO and the HSE at the Workplace Relations Commission in a bid to reach an agreement in the row over the recruitment and retention of nurses.

General Secretary of the INMO Phil Ni Sheaghdha says there’s absolutely no intent from the Government to put forward any proposal to avert the strike action.

Ms Ni Sheaghdha said: "We firmly believe now it's time for the Taoiseach to intervene. The big question our members are going to ask us is 'Where is the Taoiseach? Where is the Minister for Finance?' and 'How come they are not intently trying to resolve the matters at stake?'

"Currently, there is no indication that there is any intent to put forward a proposal that would avert this dispute."

The INMO said that the Government "produced no proposals over the course of three days of talks" to deal with the recruitment and retention crisis.

Ms Ni Sheaghdha said: "There is a vacuum of political leadership. The largest strike in the health service’s history looms and our political leaders are nowhere to be seen.

“With a heavy heart, strike preparations continue. As ever, we are available to talk any time, but we are still waiting for the government to make realistic proposals to avert this strike.”

GPs are also planning a major protest outside the Dáil on February 6, meaning services will be seriously disrupted that day.

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