Workers to ballot on industrial action in Clifden Hospital

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Galway Daily news Workers to ballot on industrial action in Clifden Hospital

SIPTU members in Clifden District Hospital, and St. Anne’s Community Nursing Unit in the town, will ballot on industrial action next month.

The ballot is being organised by SIPTU in response to allegations of unilateral changes to their terms of employment, including sick leave.

The ballot will commence on November 14 for industrial action up to going on strike, the union has said.

SIPTU member and Clifden District Hospital worker, Martina McHugh, said that management at the hospital have imposed multiple changes without agreement.

She said that these include, “moving staff from one service to another with little notice, reducing break times, increasing night duty and withdrawing access to flexible working patterns.”

“The changes are having a direct impact on our ability to deliver an important and effective service while also affecting staff work life balance.”

St. Anne’s Community Nursing Unit worker Pat Joyce added that they are concerned the HSE plans to amalgamate the services offered by the hospital and nursing unit, without considering the impact on staff and clients.

SIPTU has said that its representatives remain available to engage with the HSE regarding outstanding issues, “in line with the terms of public service agreements”.

The HSE has said that services at Clifden District Hospital are at a crisis point, and are only being provided on a day by day basis with staff shortages.

The hospital provides step down and respite services in a large catchment area across Connemara.