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Nurses vote to scrap 'no strike' clause.

NURSES will this week vote on scrapping their "no-strike" clause, leading to the possibility of mass walk-outs from Welsh hospitals.

Members of RCN Cymru will vote at their Congress in Bournemouth on ending "rule 12" - the section of their constitution which, while not outlawing strikes, makes it almost impossible to call one.

Currently strike action can only be given the green light if the RCN's Council is "satisfied that appropriate arrangements are in place to protect patients".

Since it was introduced in 1995 no strike action has been given the go-ahead.

But this week the Islington branch of the union will submit are solution calling on the rule to be scrapped, making it possible that, in the future, the RCN's Council will be able to authorise strike action without having to consider back-up plans for patients.

The resolution submitted by the Islington branch complains: "Discussion around Rule 12 often relates to what action (excluding 'strike') could betaken by nurses that would not be detrimental to the wellbeing or interests of clients; in other words, what nurses 'cannot do' as opposed to what they 'can do'."

A spokesman for the Welsh Assembly Government said: "We have a positive working relationship with the RCN in Wales and have worked closely with it on a number of issues for the benefit of staff and patients.

"It would be inappropriate for us to pre-empt a decision by union members."
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Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Apr 27, 2008
Words:235
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