Strike notice served on Mater Private

Monday 18 January 2010 20.03
Mater Private Hospital - Pay cuts for nurses
Mater Private Hospital - Pay cuts for nurses

Dublin's Mater Private Hospital is facing disruption to services from 1 February after SIPTU and the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation served strike notice in protest at pay cuts.

In a statement, SIPTU said the move followed the unilateral decision of management to cut salaries by between 5 and 7.5%.

The unions plan to picket the hospital this Wednesday in protest at the wage deductions.

SIPTU's health sector organiser Paul Bell said the Mater Private was a profitable company, but had refused to enter any meaningful dialogue with SIPTU on the pay cuts, which he described as ‘unnecessary’.

He claimed that the Mater Private, with the assistance of IBEC, was acting in conjunction with the Bon Secours and Mount Carmel private hospital groups, which are seeking to impose similar pay cuts.

Mr Bell warned that the cuts would be firmly resisted, adding that ballots for strike action were ongoing in these hospitals.

He said strike notice would be served in due course.

The focus of the dispute was the failure of management to negotiate with unions as required by existing agreements regarding wage rates and security of employment, he said.

Nurses and health support staff in the public sector have already had their pay cut by an average of around 7% following the Budget and were also subject to the pension levy.