Children's Minister welcomes deferral of planned industrial action at Oberstown centre

An independent health and safety expert is being appointed to review health and safety at the Dublin campus

Children's Minister welcomes deferral of planned industrial action at Oberstown centre

The entrance to the Oberstown Detention Centre in Lusk | Image: Google Earth

The Children's Minister has welcomed the deferral of planned industrial action at the Oberstown youth detention centre in Dublin.

Members of the IMPACT trade union had voted 'overwhelmingly' in favour of strike action over "ongoing fears over the safety of staff facing violent incidents at the detention centre".

Residential care workers, night supervising officers and middle management grades had planned to withdraw labour from January 3rd.

The decision to defer the action came after discussions today between IMPACT and the Department of Children and Youth Affairs.

An independent health and safety expert is being appointed to review health and safety at the North Dublin campus.

Minister Katherine Zappone says the decision to defer action is 'in the best interests of all' at the centre.

She said: "I urge all sides to fully engage with the independent expert who will review health and safety on the site.”

IMPACT Communications Officer Niall Shanahan says it is about securing the safety of the men and women who work at Oberstown, and ensuring a safer environment for those in their care.

"As a result of the agreement today, the strike action has been deferred in order to allow the review to take place and be completed with the agreed time frame," he explained.