Thursday, 7 February 2019
Nurses and Midwives Industrial Action: Statements
I take issue with the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform's statement on the Public Service Pay Commission. What he said goes to the heart of this dispute. He said that the commission found that pay was not found to be one of the determining factors. Does he believe this anymore because pay, retention and respect for nursing staff are at the heart of this dispute? We could have a three-day dispute in our hospitals next week that will cause untold damage to the Government and the people who use the health service. This is about pay. The Government needs to recognise that if it does not pay the nurses, that decision will come back to haunt it, so it cannot afford not to pay the nurses. Does the Minister still believe what the Public Service Pay Commission said? Is this not about pay?