Healthcare and teaching personnel are on picket lines during the NI strikes

a healthcare professional engaging in December's strike

On Tuesday, thousands of employees in Northern Ireland's health and education sectors are scheduled to go on strike.

The first strike by four teaching unions in six years is a half-day walkout over a pay dispute.

This is an additional course of action in a pay dispute for the health and public service unions, Unite, Unison, Nipsa, and GMB.

There will be a strike by teachers, nurses, ambulance, and hospital personnel. The majority of schools in Northern Ireland are anticipated to be closed until noon.

According to the Department of Education, guidelines had been released to assist principals in considering and getting ready for a strike.

The Department of Health claimed that while it completely understood the staff's annoyance, there was nothing that could be done locally to alleviate it.

The National Association of Schoolmasters and Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT), the Irish National Teachers' Organisation (INTO), the Ulster Teachers Union (UTU), and the National Education Union (NEU) are the four teaching unions that are involved.

The NASUWT is requesting a salary increase of 12 percent as a result of the ongoing impasse regarding a pay agreement.

According to Dr. Patrick Roach, general secretary of NASUWT, teachers had no other option.

He declared that "our members are not willing to watch as their take-home pay decreases and their living expenses rise.".

"If the Department of Education and employers want to put an end to this dispute, they must present a substantially improved pay offer. " .

In contrast to Jacqui White of the UTU, who claimed that the unprecedented action was a reflection of the intensity of feeling, Gerry Murphy of the INTO claimed that teachers had been forced into a corner.

"The money is there; we just need the right political priorities," said Mark Langhammer of NEU. ".

The Department of Education claimed that managers and teachers had actively discussed pay.

However, the statement noted that the negotiations were happening at a time when the financial pressures on the education sector were rising and unprecedented.

It stated that management remained dedicated to finding a solution that would guarantee teachers received just compensation.

Workers from the health unions will join teachers at a number of rallies taking place throughout Northern Ireland.

Workers were promised a pay award of £1,400 for 2022–2023, but unions claimed this wouldn't end the conflict because it was less than inflation.

Over 20,000 healthcare workers in Northern Ireland participated in a one-day strike in January.

Boy in classroom
On Tuesday, many schools will be closed until noon due to a strike by the teaching staff.

Prior to the strike on Tuesday, Unite general secretary Sharon Graham stated that their members would be demanding fair wages and safe staffing levels because the health service was in an existential crisis.

"The UK government is responsible for resolving this dispute in the absence of a functioning Stormont executive," she said.

Health workers and patients were "paying a price" for the political impasse, according to Unison's Anne Speed.

"The secretary of state's inertia speaks volumes. It is simply unacceptable to follow Westminster's lead when they appear to be doing nothing themselves. .

The combined action of the medical and teaching staff, according to Pádraig Mulholland of Nipsa, should serve as a warning to employers.

All health service workers need to receive pay increases that outpace inflation, and the ongoing understaffing that endangers lives must stop, he said.

According to the Department of Health, the strike unquestionably affects patient care.

But it went on to say that it completely understood the anger felt by staff members who persisted in working under extremely trying conditions.

"This is a national conflict that can only be settled at the national level. The department stated that Northern Ireland has a policy of pay parity with English HSC workers covered by the Agenda for Change framework.

"There is no chance for a resolution at the local level given that policy position, the lack of ministers, and the present budgetary realities.

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