UNISON Northern Ireland


Today (10th January) UNISON notes that several parties have confirmed their support for a deal to restore devolved government in Northern Ireland. Responding to this, UNISON Regional Secretary Patricia McKeown said:

“We welcome the fact that several of our political parties have now reached agreement for the restoration of government.

We now call on our incoming Health Minister and Executive to honour the commitment given collectively by the 5 main parties on 17th December 2019 to settle our industrial dispute in health by restoring pay parity to our members, by delivering a funded process for safe staffing and by making resources available to deal with the crisis across our health and social services system.

We anticipate that they will be as good as their word and look forward to speedy engagement to resolve the dispute. The Secretary of State has very publicly committed to making proper resources available to the parties to do just that. We hope that he too is as good as his word.

We have already called on the Department of Health to make sure that it secures sufficient funding immediately to enable us to conclude a speedy agreement with the health employers.

Our industrial action continues while we await further developments. We genuinely hope that justice for our members and patients alike is imminent. Their courage and tenacity has put the health and wellbeing of the People of Northern Ireland at the heart of a new political agenda. 

On the wider political front UNISON has been a vocal advocate for the return of genuine power-sharing within a framework of equality and human rights. Along with our colleagues in the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, we are carefully studying the detail of the New Decade, New Approach document to determine whether it will meet the aspirations of our members and the commitments of the Good Friday Agreement.”