News & Media

Fine Gael can't continue to ignore issues of INMO nurses

9 January 2019

Statement by Alan Kelly TD
Spokesperson on Health

Labour Party Health spokesperson, Alan Kelly TD, has called on the Minister for Public Expenditure Paschal Donohoe, to hold substantive talks with the INMO on issues around pay.

Deputy Kelly said: 

“While Minister Donohoe seems to be well able to comment on nurses’ pay when there is a microphone in front of him, yet he and his Department are reluctant to sit down with the main representative body for nurses in Ireland and discuss issues around pay and recruitment of staff. 

“We know from media reports today that at next week's meeting between Government departments and the INMO, that the Department of Public Expenditure do not want to have discussions around the core reasons behind the strike.

“This is another example of Fine Gael’s complete ineptitude when it comes to industrial relations. It seems Ministers Harris and Donohoe want to pretend the strike by the majority of Irish nurses is not happening.

“The best way to help solve the nursing crisis is by addressing the very real issues that we are too aware of.

“This morning on the national airwaves, INMO representatives confirmed that they have sought meetings with the Government, but these requests seem to have gone unnoticed. This will not give the public confidence that the Government want to sort out this issue. 

“Rather than making comments in the media that rile up nurses, those at the centre of the dispute would do well to take the temperature of the public mood.

“Government Ministers at this stage would be better off sitting down with the INMO for rational discussion on the serious issues around pay and recruitment within the healthcare sector.”