28 May 2009 Edition

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Nuacht na nOibrithe

Care workers want action on Ryan Report

DELEGATES attending the IMPACT trade union’s Civil Service conference in Portlaoise have passed an emergency motion urging the Government to immediately implement the recommendations of the report of the Commission to Inquire in to Child Abuse (the ‘Ryan Report’).
Kevin Callinan, the head of IMPACT’s Health and Welfare division representing childcare and social care professionals, said there was a need to invest in and prioritise services to children and families. He also highlighted the recent Government decision not to invest in out-of-hours social work services and pointed to the need to train and employ more social workers, social care professionals, psychologists, family therapists, family support workers and other health professionals.
Commenting on the report, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Children Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said it was a horrific litany of abuse of children by church and state and that children are still subject to state neglect.
He also called for the report’s recommendations to be fully implemented.
The Sinn Féin TD said child protection services are woefully inadequate with insufficient social workers and other front-line workers in place. “The HSE knows of cases where children are in danger but the services are not in place to make the interventions required.”

 

Ferry workers to strike

FERRY workers have served notice of a day-long strike on 4 June on the Cape Clear ferry, Naomh Ciaran II, in protest over pay cuts ranging from 22% for deckhands to 27% for the ship’s master.
SIPTU Branch Organiser Eddie Mullins said:
“The company also expects the employees to work four extra weeks between May and September for nothing. The reasons it gives are that the ferry is running at an alleged loss and the falling levels in cost of living.
“To date, the company has refused to acknowledge our correspondence, including requests for discussions. The employees are very united in this case and are determined to fight these unilateral cutbacks. We have also invoked the Payment of Wages Act, of which the company is in clear violation of.”

 

Belfast traffic wardens continue protest

BELFAST traffic wardens have continued their protests this week after 26 of them were sacked in April when they took part in unofficial strike action.
The workers are being represented by the trade union NIPSA and are protesting daily at the offices of their employer, National Car Parks (NCP), on May Street in Belfast.
NIPSA have said that they do not support unofficial strike action but will continue to work with other trade unions in representing their workers.

 

Nurses strike postponed

A NURSES’ strike due to take place this week at Sligo General Hospital over low staffing levels has been postponed until a hearing takes place at the Labour Court.
Nurses’ representatives in the Irish Nurses’ Organisation, SIPTU and their employers in the Health Service Executive have already taken part in discussions with the Labour Relations Commission but no agreement was reached between the two sides.
The INO said: “We are committed to seeking a resolution to this dispute which ensures the best possible care for patients attending the hospital.”

 

EU adopts ‘Blue Card’ system

THE EU this week adopted plans for a work permit aimed at attracting highly-skilled foreigners to the region.
This work permit ‘Blue Card’ will be similar to the ‘Green Card’ system employed in the United States. It will apply to foreign workers employed in 24 member states (not Ireland, Britain and Denmark) and will be renewable from one to four years.
The permit will ensure that workers have equal treatment with the member states’ workers in reference to working conditions, pay, qualifications and trade union rights. EU ministers also approved a set of common standards and sanctions against employers who illegally hire foreign workers.


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