ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka health workers have announced another two-day token strike n March 02 and 03 demanding solutions for unresolved issues in the sector, the Federation for Health Professionals said.
The health workers’ first round of strikes on February 07 ended by mid February following an order issued by the Colombo District Court and a discussion held with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
However, the unions said the health ministry has failed to respond to their demands within the 14 days the unions had given the government.
“We have not yet been informed of any action taken on the requests agreed upon by the Minister of Health,” convener of the Federation for Health Professionals Ravi Kumudesh said in a statement on Monday (28).
Kumudesh said the intervention of the president on the issue of salary anomalies and overtime and specimen allowances is of paramount importance and the creation of two posts of Directors of Paramedical and Paramedical Services which can be easily resolved and the issuance of a circular for the 5/7 promotions approved by the cabinet have not yet been issued.
“The Ministry of Health has not acted in good faith to prevent trade union action,” he said.
FHW said the strike will take place on March 02 and 03 at all hospitals in the country. However, it will provide immediate and urgent services as required with regard to essential treatments. The strike will not apply to the Children’s Hospitals, Maternity Hospitals, Cancer Hospitals, Kidney Hospitals, Infectious Diseases Institute, Angoda Mental Health Institute and Angoda Central Blood Bank.
“However, the executive council of the federation has unanimously decided that we will go for a continuous strike from March 10 onwards, if the ministry fails to reach a settlement within the next three days,” Kumudesh said.
The main demands of the strikers are as follows:
- Elimination of salary anomalies in paramedical, nursing and paramedical services in line with the Sri Lanka Eligibility Framework.
- Issuing the circular for 5/7 promotions as approved by the Cabinet of Ministers and making it pre-dated
- Establishment of the posts of Director and Deputy Director General of Paramedical, Paramedical and Nursing Services
- Working as agreed to increase overtime and specimen allowances not increased by 23 years (Colombo/Feb28/2022)