SIPTU defers ballot for strike action in National Ambulance Service
SIPTU has today (Friday, 13th May) deferred a ballot of its members in the National Ambulance Service (NAS) for strike action, on the specific issue of the failure of the HSE to publish a capacity review into the service, until after the Government meets next Tuesday, 17th May.
The deferral follows the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, formally contacting the union to inform it that he intends to bring the capacity review of the National Ambulance Service to the cabinet for approval.
SIPTU Health Division Organiser, Paul Bell said: “After consulting our members and the representatives of the Irish Ambulance Representative Council we have agreed to pause the national ballot in light of the decision of the Minister to bring the capacity review to his colleagues in cabinet with a view to securing an agreement for its publication. An emergency meeting of the SIPTU Ambulance Sector Committee will be convened after the cabinet meeting next Tuesday to discuss the following steps in the campaign.”
Chairman of the Irish Ambulance Representative Council, Peter Ray, said: “I welcome this news with caution. SIPTU Ambulance Professionals have been waiting a very long time for the publication of this capacity review after playing an active and constructive role in its development. We will continue our fight for the world class ambulance service that citizens deserve. We hope that the new Government seize this opportunity to make a long term commitment to the funding of a publicly owned and well resourced National Ambulance Service.”