Nurses strike looms as talks breakdown

Workplace Relations Commission talks ended without agreement

Nurses strike looms as talks breakdown

INMO General-Secretary Liam Doran arriving at Dr Steevens Hospital in Dublin | Image:

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) is warning it is likely to give the go ahead for industrial action unless there is a "radical change" in the management approach to staffing.

Talks at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) adjourned without agreement on Tuesday night and with no progress being made.

The talks involved the INMO and SIPTU unions and management - consisting of officials from the Department of Health, Public Expenditure and Reform and the Health Service Executive (HSE).

The INMO claims it became clear at the talks "that health service management have no funded workforce plan to address the current unsafe staffing levels."

It says staffing deficits are compromising patient care and negatively impacting on the health and safety of nurses and midwives.

Management have indicated they will attempt to produce a funded plan for 2017 staffing by Friday. But the INMO say management refused to commit to restore staffing to 2008 levels.

The executive council of the INMO will meet next Monday, January 30th to consider the situation.

This comes after a recent national ballot which showed 90% of its members are in favour of taking industrial action if necessary, in response to the crisis.

At this stage, no further meetings between the parties are planned.

Speaking Tuesday, INMO General-Secretary Liam Doran said: "The meeting today was very disappointing and confirmed that health service management are either unable, or unwilling, to address this crisis on both a short and medium term basis.

"The INMO Executive Council will meet on Monday and , in the absence, of a radical change from management, in their efforts to address this issue, are likely to sanction industrial action following their recent ballot."