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Govt and Unite agree GHA plan, but concerns linger

The Gibraltar Government and Unite the Union yesterday agreed a “structured way forward” to resolve all long-standing industrial issues at the Gibraltar Health Authority.
This comes after a planned protest at St Bernard’s Hospital was halted last week following a last minute meeting between unions and Health Minister Neil Costa.
At a “very positive” meeting yesterday the two bodies have agreed that all departments and wards across the GHA will be given the opportunity in a structured, time-framed process to put across the needs or issues pertaining to their department or ward together with the Unite GHA Convenor or a GHA Unite Shop Steward.
According to Unite the process will start on May 8, and will continue until all departments and/or wards have been given the attention they require.
In a statement the Government said the Ministry of Health and the GHA very much look forward to the successful resolution of these matters.
This comes as Independent MP Marlene Hassan Nahon said she had been “flooded” with messages and grievances by GHA members of staff who are at “breaking point and see no light at the end of the tunnel”.
“It therefore seems clear that Government and Unite the Union should be seriously listening to and acting upon complaints received via sustainable and viable long-term solutions and not short term patch up jobs,” she said in a statement.
“Furthermore, various sources, many of which have worked in the GHA for many years, have reported regret at being urged by Union officials at the meetings held with the Chief Minister to not ask questions and to just listen but not comment, something that further highlights the limitations and frustrations for those workers who feel despondent at the current situation.”
Mrs Hassan Nahon urged the Government to conduct an “independent and anonymous survey among staff, an extensive and exhaustive one which will allow employees to freely express their issues without fear or reprisals and also to reconsider the way in which contracts are being processed and administered”.

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