Labour Court to decide today on nurses’ strike intervention

The Labour Court will decide later if it can intervene in the ongoing pay dispute between nurses and the government.

Talks aimed at averting industrial action ended just after 3am this morning following 15 hours of negotiations.

Nursing unions and the government side spent around 35 hours this weekend briefing the Labour Court.

They arrived for talks at 12.30pm yesterday and emerged at 3am this morning.

The Labour court will now decide if there is common ground between both sides for it to intervene.

Nurses want a 12% pay rise but the government says that is not feasible and would cost an extra €300 million a year.

Speaking on his way out of the talks, Labour Court chairman, Kevin Foley, says both sides have fully briefed the court.

“I will make a decision tomorrow morning – middle of the morning or so – as to whether we will intervene or not,” said Mr Foley.

Three days of strikes by members of the INMO and PNA unions are due to begin tomorrow, which could create chaos in the health service.

“At the moment it’s going ahead, in the absence of any proposals it will be going ahead on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday,” said Phil Ní Sheaghdha, General Secretary of the INMO.

Either way a decision on whether the strikes will go ahead will be known later.