From Iceland — Law On Nurses' Strike To Hit Parliament Floor Tomorrow

Law On Nurses’ Strike To Hit Parliament Floor Tomorrow

Published June 11, 2015

Andie Sophia Fontaine
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The government has announced that it will use legislation to force an end to the nurses’ strike, while a nurse union leader warns this will only lead to more nurses quitting.

MBL reports that the government has announced this evening that, tomorrow morning, they will introduce legislation which will temporarily force an end to the nurses’ strike. This will stay in effect until July 1. The legislation will ban all “strike actions”, which includes not only striking, but also temporary work stoppages and lockouts, or other forms of activity the government may deem too much like a strike.

As reported, government ministers and MPs have hinted at or outright called for legislation banning the nurses’ strike for weeks now.

At the same time, Ólafur G. Skúlason, the director of the Icelandic Nurses’ Association, told RÚV that such legislation would not solve the problem, but would “add fuel to the fire” in driving nurses away from Iceland.

“I have heard from some nurses that if a law is passed [ordering them back to work], they will not accept this,” he said. “As I have said before, we are trying to ensure that we have nurses here in the long term, and have them working in Iceland. We are losing them to other professions, and to nursing jobs overseas, and I think that [this law] would just add fuel to the fire.”

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