Student nurses to protest over cuts
Lunchtime protests will be staged by student nurses and midwives across the country over Government plans to cut their pay.
Industrial trouble-shooters are also set to hear submissions against the Budgetary decision to gradually reduce and phase out salaries for fourth-year trainees working on wards during a nine-month placement.
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) stressed patient care would not be affected during the demonstrations, between 12.30pm to 1.30pm in 13 hospitals nationwide.
Meanwhile union leaders, the Department of Health and Health Service Executive will all attend a hearing at the Labour Relations Commission.
A protest march and mass rally has also been planned for next Wednesday in Dublin city centre, when a letter will be delivered to the Department of Health calling on the incoming minister to reverse this decision.
The INMO, Psychiatric Nurses Association and Siptu have requested meetings with the leaders of the five political parties after the rally to ask if they will reverse the cuts if in power after the general election - and then inform 6,000 members affected of each reply before they go to the ballot boxes.
If there is no resolution, all fourth year pre-registration nurses/midwives will be balloted for a withdrawal of labour with industrial action commencing in early March.
Liam Doran, INMO general secretary, accused health chiefs of imposing slave labour on 1,600 fourth year pre-registration nurses and midwives who will work 12-hour days, night shifts and weekends in place of qualified colleagues.
Nurses and midwives last went on strike over pay and conditions in May 2007, but called off action just days ahead of the last general election.