11 December 2008 Edition

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Nuacht na nOibrithe

Strike ballot by 9,000 health workers

NINE THOUSAND health workers will be balloted for strike action after the Health Service Executive revealed cutbacks across the state from January in a letter from the HSE’s Director of Human Resources.
Staff have complained that there has been no negotiation with their shop stewards or trade unions. Those balloted include healthcare assistants, home-help workers, carers, cleaners porters and hospital security workers. In the letter from the HR Director, there are proposals for redeploying existing staff to new vacancies, extensions to the working day, and limiting agency work to “emergency situations”.
If strike action is agreed, it will only go ahead if the HSE makes the cutbacks, SIPTU says.

 Aer Lingus cabin crew reach agreement

CABIN CREW at Aer Lingus have voted to accept a draft agreement reached between management of the airline and trade unions at the Labour Relations Commission (LRC).
Ballots had been conducted by the workers’ unions with 59 per cent of IMPACT union members voting in favour of the proposals, and 80 per cent of SIPTU members accepting them. The new agreement will require 7 per cent of workers in Cork and Dublin, and 35 per cent in Shannon to leave.
The remaining number of staff will be required to sign up to new terms and conditions that Aer Lingus says are needed to save €50m.


Abuse of Filipino fishermen

A MEETING of trade unions took place this week in order to discuss the plight of Filipino workers in the Six Counties fishing industry who are said to be working as much as 70 hours a week for as little as £20.
Reports have also emerged that the fishermen are living on boats all-year-round with no heating and little food. They are also said to be suffering physical attacks and racial abuse from their ‘employers’.

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