Rostrevor staff issue 'to be examined'

 

Minister for Health James Reilly has said the HSE will examine how workers at the former Rostrevor nursing home in Dublin can be facilitated.

Siptu had called on the State to intervene and provide alternative work in the health sector for former staff at the home, which was permanently closed in the wake of allegations of serious abuse of patients.

The 14 former employees include nurses, care assistants, kitchen assistants and cleaners.

Dr Reilly said this morning the HSE would look at the situation.

"We will see if there is any way we can facilitate people whose visas now are impaired because they were tied to this job and who are clearly performing in the public interest and clearly performing their jobs very well," he said.

Asked about the Siptu call to employ the staff, Dr Reilly said: "It's something we can examine, certainly."

The Minister was also asked about the role of management and the treatment of the former workers at the home who were owed back wages and had not received their P45 forms nor references. "I am not impressed," he said.

But he added: "I am acutely aware that this whole matter may yet come before the courts in a far more serious fashion than is currently the case, and I'm reluctant to say too much on that basis".

Two of the workers who blew the whistle on the alleged abuse of elderly residents at the nursing home were fired by last week.