People Before Profit are calling on the Government and in particular the Health minister Simon Harris to accept that workers should have a right to trade union representation of their choice.
Bríd Smith TD said: “We believe this is a fundamental right for all workers and that without such a right the whole labour movement and the wider working class cannot adequately defend their rights and working conditions.
“The current dispute in the health service with paramedics and ambulance workers is a key moment for all workers. These workers have joined NASRA , a branch of the PNA. They represent the largest single union in that sector with more members than any other trade union. The workers involved have shown during recent strikes and protests that are committed to membership of this union and want this union to conduct negotiations with their employer on their behalf.
“That is their decision and it must be respected.
“Instead the Government have encouraged the employer (the HSE) to ignore the workers wishes and have deliberately provoked a dispute which is damaging an already chaotic health service.
“This is reckless and shows contempt both to the workers who provide such a vital service and to the wider general public.
“We call on the minister to instruct the HSE to meet with NASRA at the WRC and to accept the democratic wishes of the workers involved and recognise this union as their legitimate representative.
“We call on the wider trade union movement, including all ICTU unions represented in this sector to accept and support their brothers and sisters right to join a union of their choice and to be represented by that union.
“It will not benefit workers in other unions if the Government succeed in denying workers the right to union representation and indeed will damage the fight for worker’s rights and equality across all unions and sectors.
“People Before Profit fully support the workers in NASRA and will stand with them in their campaign for union recognition.”