Nursing staff on the picket line at Altnagelvin Hospital, yesterday. (Photo - Tom Heaney, nwpresspics)
Derry nurses have vowed to continue their strike action until their demands over both pay parity and patient safety are met.
Nurses and health care staff took to the picket lines at Altnagelvin and Gransha Hospitals yesterday and will hold a second 12-hour strike tomorrow.
Speaking from the picket line at Altnagelvin, theatre nurse and international nurse co-ordinator, Jonah Atos, said patient safety was the primary reason behind their decision to take industrial action.
She said: "We are fighting for the safety of patients and it seems like no one is listening. We just want our voices to be heard. I have seen operations cancelled because there aren't enough nurses.
"I have seen my colleagues crying because they are so disappointed and they know how many years patients have waited for these operations."
Mrs Atos, who is from the Philippines but has lived and worked in Derry for 18 years, said even if pay parity with nurses in England, Scotland and Wales was granted, strike action would continue until staffing levels were addressed. We can't compromise. It has to be both," she said.
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