Press release issued on behalf of the Psychaitric Nurses Association:
Saturday, 20 July 2019 - The Psychiatric Nurses Association Ambulance Personnel Branch reports a total disregard of contingency planning for the national ambulance service during the 24-hour strike by ambulance members of the PNA in pursuit of their demand for recognition of their union, the PNA. Reports from across the country confirm that the HSE is disregarding contingency arrangements whereby HSE managers and members of other unions who are not on strike respond to emergency calls ahead of PNA members for the duration of the strike action which commenced yesterday (Friday) at 2 pm for a 24-hour period. The PNA report that at the two ambulance service control centres for the entire country, staff have not been informed of contingency plans and the HSE is continuing to allocate emergency calls to PNA members while they are on strike.
Commenting, Peter Hughes, General Secretary of the PNA said: ‘The HSE's failure to implement or even inform ambulance service personnel and controllers of contingency arrangements is reckless beyond belief. They appear to want to engage in a game of chicken with the PNA, goading our members not to respond to emergency calls when they know that we are on strike. The evidence of the last 24-hours is that the HSE is comfortable with an outrageous abdication of professional standards and breaching their own basic contingency planning, such as informing the ambulance centres of our strike and contingency arrangements to cover this.'
‘Our members are professional frontline responders and will continue to respond to all emergencies. However, we will not tolerate the cavalier and arrogant approach of the HSE who seem hell bent on denying basic union representation, whatever the consequences,' he added.