PM says strikes a 'consequence of measures' of previous governments

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 17-03-2019 07:32:00 · 0 Comments
PM says strikes a 'consequence of measures' of previous governments

Portugal's prime minister, António Costa, said that none of the strikes called by different sectors were a consequence of decisions taken by the Socialist government but due to the measures imposed by previous governments.

Costa was speaking to journalists at the end of a visit to the São João hospital in capital Lisbon.

When asked how the government was going to react to a strike organised by the nurses' trade union Sindepor, he played down the situation saying the right to strike was "obviously legitimate."

He added that up to now no strike had resulted from "any measure adopted by this government" and said strikes had the "legitimate ambition for people to go faster and further."

However, Portugal's minister of health said in Abrantes, Portugal, on Wednesday that she was "very concerned" about the nurses strike scheduled for April, adding that the national health service had been hard-pressed due to protests.

Marta Temido said that despite the "enormous respect everyone" has for the right to protest and for the right to strike, "extreme positions" affected patients of public services.

Nurses are set to go on strike between 2 and 30 April according to a notice released on Wednesday by the nurses' trade union Sindepor.

Last Friday, thousands of nurses from around Portugal staged a protest against poor working conditions.

The protest took place following a strike in operating theatres and after the cabinet on 7 February took the controversial move of imposing a civil requisition of nurses who had been striking since 31 January in operating theatres at four major state hospitals, alleging that they were failing to comply with rules on skeleton services.

The main points of contention in the strike are the unfreezing of career progressions and nurses’ basic salary.


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