SIPTU representatives have today (Thursday, 24th September) demanded an urgent meeting with the management of the Health Service Executive (HSE) over the concerns of union members over its ability to deliver on the effective implementation of the Winter Service Plan 2020. SIPTU Deputy General Secretary for the Public Service, John King, said: “The Health Service Staff Panel of Trade Unions has written to the HSE seeking an urgent engagement to discuss the significant and justifiable concerns of our members over the effective implementation of the Winter Service Plan 2020. While the publication of this long overdue plan is to be broadly welcomed, we believe that the devil is in the detail and that unnecessary time has been lost by the delay in its publication. Ultimately, the purpose of this engagement will be to nail down how the goals of this plan are going to be realised fairly and effectively.” He added: “Our members have been working around the clock throughout this pandemic and are coping with ever increasing demands and chronic fatigue. The winter season is now upon us and these essential frontline workers need guarantees that existing staff will be supported through adequate recruitment plans, investment in critical infrastructure, increased capacity levels and the sufficient resources required to keep our health service going through what will be a long and challenging winter for all.”