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1,642 sign petition calling on reversal of cuts to graduate nurses' pay

It comes after the HSE announced the recruitment of 1,000 graduate nurses and midwives on lower pay rates.

OVER 1,600 PEOPLE  have signed an online petition calling on the cuts to nurses’ pay to be reversed.

It comes after the Health Service Executive announced the recruitment of 1,000 graduate nurses and midwives to the public health service next year.

The graduate nurses will receive a two-year contract and will be paid a rate of 80 per cent of the first point of the salary scale for a staff nurse.

The HSE said that those recruited can earn “approximately €26,000 per annum including basic pay and premium pay”.

The recruitment drive aims to save around €10 million for the HSE by reducing the reliance on agency workers and overtime.

The online petition, which was posted yesterday, read:

At present, it is not the desire of some student nurses to emigrate, however, the way the government is treating our profession it may leave some with no choice.

After studying and working hard for four years to earn our honours degree these students feel it is unfair and unjust we will have a starting salary that is less than that received by other occupations in the hospital which do not require a degree.

Naomi Alexander Leacy, who signed the petition yesterday, said she thinks the cuts are disgraceful, especially when other hospital positions go untouched:

I realise everyone is enduring cuts, but the repeated cuts on nurses, and student nurses in particular is offensive when so many other positions in the hospitals go untouched.

Liam Doran, General Secretary of the INMO said the HSE announcement was “tarnished and sullied” by the announcement of reduced pay and that they would seek discussions with the HSE in order to address the shortcomings.

Read: HSE to recruit up to 1,000 graduate nurses and midwives next year >

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