Marking Workers’ Memorial Day 2022, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has called on healthcare employers to do more to ensure safe working conditions for Irish nurses and midwives.
INMO General Secretary, Phil Ní Sheaghdha said:
“Today on Workers’ Memorial Day, we remember the 22 healthcare workers who have died because of COVID-19. Our thoughts are with their families and friends who never got a chance to say goodbye.
“It is an important day for trade unions who struggle to improve conditions for workers worldwide. It is also a time to reflect on how far we still have to go and the steps we must take to protect the lives of future generations of workers.
“Many Irish nurses and midwives are currently working in unsafe environments with hundreds of patients on trolleys every single day while contending with a airborne virus. The INMO has long called for the ventilation in hospitals to be examined. Health settings are not just places of care; they are workplaces for thousands of workers. The provision of a safe and healthy workplace is a legal responsibility held by employers, the safety of nurses and midwives should not be a secondary matter.
“Irish nurses and midwives also face an increasing amount of physical, verbal, and sexual assaults in the workplace. Since the beginning of 2021, over 3,416 nurses have been assaulted – on average 7 assaults per day. The pressure cooker type environment that our members work in is leading to more assaults. This means that frontline staff are being put at risk for conditions they are not responsible for.
“Today, on International Workers’ Memorial Day - 28 April, we again remember those who have lost their lives and rededicate ourselves to fight for safer workplaces.”