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News Update 17 - 17th February 2017
Campaign For Staffing / Recruitment / Retention Initiatives

Preparations Continue For Commencement Of Action, Nationwide, On Tuesday, 7th March 2017

Friday, 17 February 2017


Dear Member

I refer again to our national campaign, for initiatives to begin addressing the staffing/ recruitment/retention campaign facing nursing/midwifery at this time.

As you know, from my last update and media coverage, following rejection of proposals, from management, the INMO is now preparing to commence nationwide action, in the form of a work to rule, from start of shift on Tuesday, 7th March 2017.

In that regard I now wish to advise you of the latest developments in relation to same:

1.    The INMO has now served formal notice, on all public health sector employers, of the commencement of nationwide action, which essentially involves working to contract, commencing on Tuesday, 7th March 2017.

2.    This nationwide work to rule, which will apply in all areas of the public health service, involves members withdrawing their goodwill and refraining from undertaking the following duties:

  • Redeployment (i.e. from one ward to another during a shift);
  • cross-cover (i.e. from one geographic area to another in the community);
  • working extra periods/hours beyond shift finishing time; and
  • withdrawing from overtime.

 The central objective, of this work to rule, will be, in the absence of an adequate commitment from management to address the staffing/recruitment/ retention issues, to force the contraction of services i.e. bed closures, so that activity levels matches available staffing levels.

3.    The INMO continues to establish campaign committees, in all workplaces, whose task it will be to engage with management locally, on contingency planning, and to manage/oversee the action, should it commence, from 7th March 2017.

4.    Also on that Tuesday, 7th March 2017, to publicly mark the commencement of the nationwide campaign to address the staffing/recruitment/retention crisis, the Organisation will also undertake the following:

  • lunchtime protests (12.45 p.m. to 1.15 p.m.) in large acute hospitals; and
  • a social media (Thunderclap) event, in all other work locations, allowing members, through the use of social media, to publicly indicate their support for the campaign.

Further details, in relation to these further actions, will be circulated closer to the time.

5.    As required, in this situation, the INMO will meet with management, both nationally and locally, to agree contingency measures, to ensure the maintenance of essential services for the duration of the dispute:

  • in that regard the INMO is meeting with the HSE, at national level, on next Tuesday, 21st February 2017, with regard to contingency measures/planning.

6.    In recent days the Organisation has met with the Lansdowne Road National Oversight Body, and the Officers of the Public Services Committee of the ICTU, to discuss the issues in dispute and to consider how matters could be progressed:

  • while further discussions are likely, no further engagement with health service management, either directly or with the assistance of a third party, are scheduled at this time.

Summary

This campaign, as determined by the recent national ballot, is seeking initiatives which will begin to address, in a planned and coherent manner, the severe difficulties with regard to staffing/recruitment/retention which exist at this time.

In the absence of such initiatives the Organisation’s action will be to have members undertake their full range of duties while highlighting the current staffing shortages by not cross covering/redeploying/working overtime.  In other words if staffing levels cannot be improved then activity levels must be reduced in the interest of the health and safety of our members and to ensure they can deliver safe care through safe practice to patients/clients.

The INMO remains available for discussions, with regard to these critical issues with health management, either directly or with the assistance of a third party.  However, at this time, the focus of every member in every workplace across the country, must be to engage with local campaign committees and to ensure you are fully familiar with the nature and form of the work to rule that is due to commence at the start of shift on Tuesday, 7th March 2017.  In that regard further information will issue, locally, and all members are asked to attend any meetings called, by the INMO, over the next two weeks.

Thank you for your attention to this note and, critically, for your full involvement in this campaign.

Further updates will issue in the coming days.

Yours sincerely

Liam Doran
General Secretary 

 
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Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation (Cumann Altrai agus Ban Cabhrach na hEireann). The Whitworth Building, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7. T:0016640600 E:inmo@inmo.ie