Labour Court hears Covid recognition claim
|The HSE told the WRC that it had no mandate from the Government to make proposals to recognise health workers’ contribution.
A Labour Court hearing on the row over recognition for health workers’ efforts and commitment during the Covid-19 pandemic took place earlier this week.
Fórsa and other health unions referred the case to the court after a July meeting in the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) saw no progress on the unions’ claim.
The HSE told the WRC that it had no mandate from the Government to make proposals to recognise health workers’ contribution. The unions – led by Fórsa, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) and SIPTU – subsequently asked Taoiseach Micheál Martin to intervene amid growing frustration among health staff.
Fórsa’s Head of Health and Welfare, Éamonn Donnelly, said: “This has become deeply damaging to the morale of health care workers who, without exception, have demonstrated extraordinary commitment in their response to public need since the pandemic struck Ireland in February 2021. It’s demoralising that we’ve ended up in the Labour Court when there is broad public and political consensus on the issue.”
The unions say the Government is out of step with Northern Ireland, the UK, and most EU countries, where health workers have already seen recognition of their extraordinary efforts and contribution.
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