27/05/2016 Comments are off Patrick Cole
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SIPTU members in National Ambulance Service control centre to take industrial action

SIPTU members in the National Ambulance Service control centre in Tallaght, Dublin 24, have served notice of industrial action which will begin on Monday, 6th June.

The action is due to the failure of management to implement agreements reached, following mediation at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), on staffing levels, the filling of permanent vacancies, payment of correct pay rates and retention of staff.

SIPTU Organiser, John McCamley, said: “On 6th June, SIPTU members will begin a work-to-rule action which will affect non-emergency duties within the control centre. Staff have gone through a long and difficult engagement process at the WRC to try to resolve this dispute but unfortunately our members have found that commitments given by management have not been honoured on multiple occasions. SIPTU members are calling on management to fully implement all the WRC agreements in order to prevent a further escalation in this dispute.”

SIPTU meets Minister for Health to discuss role of Radiographers and Radiation Therapists

SIPTU representatives today (Thursday, 26th May) met with the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, to discuss the potential to develop the role of Radiation Therapists and Radiographers in the health service.

SIPTU Sector Organiser, Kevin Figgis, said: “At the meeting we presented the Minister with our members’ vision for the positive development of the role of Radiation Therapists and Radiographers. Advances in technology, education qualifications and state registration present an opportunity for the transformation of the manner in which scans and treatment are prescribed, performed and reported on.”

SIPTU Radiographers and Radiation Therapists National Executive President, Michele Monahan described the meeting as “positive”.

She said: “Our members believe an advancement of their role will ensure that the best use of diagnostic services is secured to the benefit of patients. We look forward to future engagement with the Minister’s office to further expand on proposals for role expansion in the health service which are included in the Programme for Government.”

SIPTU Health Division Organiser, Paul Bell said: “We informed the Minister that we are seeking to deliver sustainable solutions to the challenges health workers face every day within our health service.

“SIPTU has 45,000 members within the Nursing and Midwifery, Allied Health Professionals, National Ambulance Service and Support Grades in the health service. Our members look forward to developing a constructive working relationship with the Minister and his Department.”

Read a copy of the submission here

To download a workplace poster for our CPD day on the 11th of June click here

26/05/2016 Comments are off Patrick Cole
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SIPTU nurses in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital consider proposals to deal with staffing crisis

SIPTU members of the nursing staff of Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, County Louth, will consider proposals from management which are aimed at securing an agreed solution to a dispute concerning staffing levels at the facility.

SIPTU Organiser, John McCamley, said: “Our members have demanded an emergency plan be put in place by management at the hospital to assess the clinical and safety risks on each of the wards on a day by day basis. Members have also raised concerns regarding the recruitment and retention of staff, governance structures on the wards as well as a dependency on agency staff and overtime to fill vacancies.

“SIPTU representatives have brought the issue of the failure to fill nursing vacancies at the hospital to the Workplace Relations Commission following a breakdown in negotiations with management.”

He added: “While SIPTU members of the nursing staff accept that there has been some movement by management in the hospital regarding a range of issues, they have raised concerns that the proposals may not go far enough to deal with substantial problems around bed capacity and other concerns.

“We have written to management seeking more details on its proposals. On receipt of a revised document, SIPTU members will then decide if the proposals go far enough to bridge the gap between the parties”.

SIPTU members serve notice of industrial action at Oberstown Detention Centre

SIPTU members working in Oberstown Detention Centre in Lusk, County Dublin, have today (Wednesday, 25th May) served notice of a series of work stoppages beginning on Tuesday, 31st May, from 8.00 a.m. to 12.00 p.m.

The action is a result of a management refusal to adequately address serious health and safety concerns highlighted by staff.

SIPTU Organiser, Ray Stanley, said: “Our members, along with their colleagues in IMPACT, have on numerous occasions over the last 15 months raised concerns regarding health and safety issues for staff and the young people that they care for. These include the fact that our members are at a daily risk of serious injury and assault.

“Due to management intransigence, the workers have been left with no option but to take industrial action in an attempt to have their concerns adequately addressed. Management must immediately engage with staff and their representatives with the aim of agreeing changes at the facility that will ensure that a safe environment is created for staff and the young residents.”

He added: “The work stoppages between 8.00 a.m. and 12.00 p.m. will begin on Tuesday, 31st May, and continue each Tuesday throughout the month of June. It is deeply regrettable that staff have had to undertake this action. During the industrial action the staff will continue to provide the best care possible. They are also committed to ensuring that the action will not interfere with the state examinations being held at the Centre during June.”

23/05/2016 Comments are off Patrick Cole
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CPD course for radiation therapists and radiographers organised

A ONE-DAY Continuing Professional Development (CPD) event for SIPTU members employed as radiation therapists and radiographers will be held in the Gresham Hotel, Dublin, on Saturday 11th June.

SIPTU Allied Health Professionals Sector Organiser, Kevin Figgis, said: “The SIPTU Health Division is delighted to be organising this event. It clearly shows a tangible commitment and understanding of the importance of the further professional development of our members.

“Given the requirement for state registration of radiation therapists and radiographers, SIPTU believes by showing leadership in supporting the importance of CPD we will deliver better health care for patients and better jobs for health care professionals.”

To register please email ltucker@siptu.ie

22/05/2016 Comments are off Patrick Cole
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SIPTU Vice-President calls for accelerated pay restoration for all public servants

SIPTU Vice-President, Gene Mealy, has called for an acceleration in the restoration of pay and conditions of employment for public servants.

Responding to the public debate surrounding the future of the Lansdowne Road Agreement and the improvement in public finances, Gene Mealy said that all workers in the public service who suffered hardship and pay cuts during the crisis years must now benefit from any accelerated restoration agreement.

He said: “All public servants, regardless of grade, category or profession who suffered hardship and contributed significantly during the crisis, must now benefit in any accelerated restoration agreement.

“Those who call for sectoral restoration are failing to take cognisance of the contribution made by all public servants, particularly those on low pay.

“All discussions on this issue should be dealt with by the parties which negotiated the Public Sector Agreements, including the Lansdowne Road Agreement.”

19/05/2016 Comments are off Patrick Cole
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SIPTU demands HSE reverses decision to suspend recruitment in health service

SIPTU has today (Thursday, 19th May) written to the Health Service Executive (HSE) to demand management reverse a decision to suspend recruitment in all areas of the health service.  

SIPTU Health Division Organiser, Paul Bell said: “This development is deeply disturbing. The HSE never consulted with our members prior to announcing its decision to health service staff today (Thursday, 19th May) that it had suspended recruitment.

“The impact of this decision cannot be understated. It will lead to a severe reduction in crucial patient services while critical vacancies across the service remain unfilled.”

He added: “SIPTU members working in the Nursing and Midwifery, Allied Health Professionals, National Ambulance Service and Support Grades sectors are deeply concerned that they will not be adequately resourced to provide for the ever increasing demands placed upon them. 

“SIPTU is demanding this decision is immediately reversed and vacancies which have been approved by the HSE for recruitment are processed without delay.”

SIPTU seeks urgent meeting with Minister for Health concerning ambulance Capacity Review

SIPTU has written to the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, today (Wednesday, 18th May) seeking an urgent meeting to discuss the implementation of the recommendations contained in a capacity review of the National Ambulance Service which was published yesterday.

SIPTU Health Division Organiser, Paul Bell said: “We are looking to speak with the Minister concerning what he intends to do to ensure the €25 million necessary to fund the implementation of the recommendations contained in this report is made available. Only when these recommendations are implemented in full will our communities have the standard of first response medical care that they need and the intolerable ambulance waiting times those living in rural communities currently have to endure will be brought to an end.

“SIPTU was the first stakeholder to call for a capacity review of the service in 2014. In recent months, we have fought hard for this review to be published in the public interest. The previous government delayed its publication. This explains why it is dated October 2015 but was only finally published yesterday.”

He added: “The review highlights the unacceptable work loads and conditions our members endure due to the National Ambulance Service being understaffed. According to the review, the service needs an additional 461 personnel, which at the current rate of recruitment would take almost five years to achieve. There is also an urgent requirement for 72 vehicles, many of which will be deployed in rural communities. 

“Our members are deeply concerned that there has been no comment from the current Government on the urgency of providing funds for the full implementation of the recommendations contained in the report.”

Audio

SIPTU urges HSE to engage on the findings of the National Ambulance Service Capacity Review

SIPTU has today (Tuesday, 17th May) welcomed the decision of the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, to publish the National Ambulance Service capacity review and urged the Health Service Executive (HSE) to immediately engage with the union on its findings.

Speaking after an emergency meeting of SIPTU National Ambulance Sector Committee, Divisional Organiser, Paul Bell said: “Our members have mandated us to open direct conversations with the HSE on how best to implement the findings of the capacity review. The implementation of the capacity review will require a strong commitment from the Minister to ensure the appropriate funding is made available for the training and recruitment of the 400 ambulance personal identified in the review. This is essential if we are to have a publicly funded National Ambulance Service which the general public can trust and that citizens deserve.”

Chairman of the Irish Ambulance Representative Council, Peter Ray, said: “ Our members have long held the view that staffing levels and capital investment were utterly inadequate. This report vindicates our members’ position and the struggle we have been involved in over the last number of years. We feel with the publication of the review we have the tools to make real progress towards a building a world class service. We look forward to the challenges ahead and to genuine engagement with the HSE to develop a publicly funded service that’s fit for purpose. It is now vitally important that all stakeholders involved in the ambulance services deliver on what is a transformative and pivotal report.”

To view the full report click here