Saturday 2nd February 2019
A quick update on the Executive Council meeting today, following our magnificent display of unity and determination last Wednesday.
The Executive decided three main things:
1. There will be two additional strike days added to the current list: on the 19th and 21st of February.
2. The strike is escalating: further services are being brought into the strike. The number of services affected on Wednesday was 82. Next Tuesday it will be 240. This is mainly due to respite services in intellectual disability and care of the elderly will now be included in the dispute. You will, in time, get more details from your strike committees.
3. We will organise a national rally on Saturday 9th of February in Dublin. We know from polls that 74% of the public support our strike – we aim to build on that with this rally and show the government that the Irish people stand with us.
More details, including on transport, will be provided in the coming days. You can sign up for the event on Facebook here. I know that this is a difficult time for every nurse and midwife in Ireland. Tensions are high, workloads remain heavy, and there will be voices seeking to divide us. The government have still refused to make proposals. The public are with us. Our cause is just. Truth is on our side and our union stands together.
I ask members to maintain unity and our collective strength. Support and work with your strike committees to ensure that this campaign can be both safe and successful. Keep an eye on our social medial platforms and www.inmo.ie for further updates, picket locations and up todate news re strike.
Phil Ní Sheaghdha
Friday, 1st February 2019
Thank you for the magnificent display of strength last Wednesday, 30th January. Twenty years since our first national strike and for only the second time in our history, your strike captured the attention of the public who showed overwhelming support for our just case.
While none of us nurses and midwives wish to be in conflict with the government or on strike, the level of frustration with understaffing and the inability to either recruit or retain the numbers required to provide safe care has brought us to the point where there is no alternative but to protest.
Strikes for nurses and midwives are unlike any other strike and you are to be complimented for conducting both a successful and a safe strike by providing essential life-preserving care and emergency response teams. The strike is not against patients, they don’t choose to be in our care, and we must insure that in spite of the strike we minimise or eliminate all risk for them.
The fight to achieve parity of esteem with our peer group of degree level health professionals is difficult and challenging and we must be prepared to dig in for the long haul. Your elected Executive Council is meeting tomorrow (Saturday) to set further strike dates, in addition to the ones we have already announced.
Next Tuesday and Thursday we will repeat the 24-hour strikes unless the government come to the table and provide a negotiating platform from which a solution can be achieved. Ministers regularly say in the media that they are available for talks, but the government have still not taken any initiative to resolve this dispute.
So, I say to you colleagues we must next week show that we are not going away and that we are in this for the long haul. Please maintain unity and strength and work with strike committees to ensure that this campaign can be both safe and successful.
We will keep you appraised of all developments through these updates and through our social media platforms throughout the campaign. In unity there is strength, our cause is just, and you are doing the right thing. Nurses and midwives must stand together in the interest of patients and our professions.
Phil Ni Sheaghdha