Kathleen Funchion TD supports nurses and midwives
Speaking this evening in support of the Dáil of nurses and midwives, Sinn Féin’s TD for Carlow/Kilkenny Kathleen Funchion said that it was clear to all, including the public, that a water shed moment had been reached where the conditions facing nurses and midwives in hospitals across the state are completely unsustainable and intolerable.
Deputy Funchion said:
“I support all nurses and midwives who have been taking direct action, particularly the Nurses from the District hospitals around Carlow and Kilkenny in my own constituency.
“Overcrowding at St Luke's Hospital in Kilkenny remained the second-highest on record, according to the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) last year.
“INMO figures published in January showed 4,052 people on trolleys and wards in total across last year, the second-highest since records began, in 2010, when it was 140 people.
“In this context, the nurses and midwives in my constituency made the very tough but considered decision to strike. And while legally required to give one week’s notice, they, in fact, gave three to allow for safety planning.
“It’s clear to all, including the public that we have reached a water shed moment where conditions facing nurses and midwives in hospitals across the state are completely unsustainable and intolerable.
“This is a predominantly female sector, similar to other areas like the childcare/early years sectors. Both make the same calls to government for basic respect for their profession and for improved working conditions.
“The government need to put their money where their mouth is rather than simply speak highly of the nurses and midwives workforce.
“Concrete measures are needed to improve pay and working conditions if we want to retain the essential staff we already have in hospitals as well recruiting new workers– staff we desperately need for the future of our health service and the patients being cared for in it.”