PNA NURSES TO COMMENCE INDUSTRIAL ACTION FROM MONDAY IN RESPONSE TO HSE INACTION ON STAFF ASSAULTS.
The Psychiatric Nurses Association (PNA) today (Friday,.3 rd Feb ) announced that nurses in The Child and Adolescent Unit in Merlin Park Galway will commence Industrial Action on Monday 6 th February 2012.
The PNA has been forced to take this action due to the failure of HSE management to respond to the frightening level of assaults on nurses in the Unit. Since the opening of the Unit a year ago Nurses have suffered in excess of 190 assaults.
PNA Industrial Relation Officer, Declan Breen said:
“The PNA is horrified at the attitude of HSE to its staff in the Child and Adolescent Unit who are subjected to repeated and dangerous assaults. The unprecedented number of assaults recently impacts not only on the staff trying to carry out their professional duties, but on the other patients in the Unit. HSE management have a clear set of proposals to deal with this serious problem but have refused to act on any of them, leaving staff with no choice but to resolve this matter through industrial action.”
“The scale of the problem is evidenced by figures that show that in a three month period from July to the end of September last, staff suffered 81 assaults, some causing significant injury which resulted in serious sick leave. This has had a major effect on staff morale as well as the ability of the nurses to deliver the service that this vulnerable client group demands.”
“Despite the intervention of the LRC, HSE management have refused to change internal policies and practices to deal with the problem.”
The PNA is demanding:
• A number of vacant Clinical Nurse Management (CNM2) post be filled
• Internal policies on violence and management of aggression to be agreed and fully implemented and brought in line with national standards.
• Short term reduction in the number of beds to allow the situation to be brought under control.
• Agreed staffing numbers for the Unit to be maintained either through recruitment or agency staff.
Mr Breen warned the HSE that the PNA would escalate its action if management do not deliver a safe work place.
The work to rule commences on Monday, February 6th.
Media Contacts : Declan Breen, Industrial Relations Officer 0874106948/ Derek Cunningham 0862430535