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Minister urged to intervene in ambulance dispute

10 June, 2008

Sinn Féin Regional development Spokesperson, Raymond McCartney MLA (Foyle) has called on the Health Minister, Michael McGimpsey to intervene in a dispute over wages and conditions for ambulance staff in Derry.

Raymond McCartney commented: "Frontline ambulance staff such as paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians have now been waiting almost four years for their pay and conditions to be reviewed as part of the 'Agenda For Change' policy.

"Agenda For Change is a programme launched in October 2004 to harmonise terms and conditions for employees within the Health Service.

"However, the paramedics based at Altnagelvin are still waiting for their pay bands to be agreed and that is simply unacceptable.

"These workers provide an invaluable frontline service and should be valued and treated with the respect and conditions they deserve.

"Instead, I understand that staff are contemplating strike action because of the way they have been treated.

"I believe the emergency staff have been extremely patient in waiting four years for their pay deal but this cannot go on and I have written to the Health Minister, Micheal McGimpsey asking him to explain the delay and to intervene directly to resolve this dispute." ENDS

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