The programme of industrial action follows a recent ballot in which 96% of RCN members who returned their ballot papers voted to take industrial action and 92% voted to take strike action. The ballot involved RCN members working under Agenda for Change terms and conditions within the Health and Social Care service [HSC] in Northern Ireland.
The RCN has announced arrangements to take forward industrial action, including strike action, across HSC services in Northern Ireland. You can find out more here.
RCN Northern Ireland Director Pat Cullen said: “The last thing that any nurse wants is to have to take industrial action. However, as we have stated on many occasions in recent weeks and months, nurses now feel that we have no choice. This was demonstrated clearly in our recent ballot. With around 2,800 vacant nursing posts in the system, record levels of expenditure on agency staff to try to plug the gaps, and nurses’ pay continuing to fall further and further behind the rest of the UK, nurses have had enough. The RCN has been raising these issues for many years, but nobody in the corridors of power has listened.