DCNA Executive Director Edward Smith met with Liam Doran, the leader of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) and Phil Ni Sheaghdha, the INMO’s Director of Industrial Relations, on October 5th, while Smith was touring Ireland. The leaders discussed differences between labor laws in Ireland and the United States, contract negotiations and issues of mutual concern, especially nurse staffing and workplace violence in health care institutions. INMO is the largest nursing union in Ireland, representing approximately 40,000 members. The following day, INMO held a press conference in Dublin to discuss staffing and pay issues. “DCNA and INMO agreed to maintain contact and to build a relationship based on labor solidarity and mutual goals with respect to nursing,” Smith reports.
Last week the Metropolitan Washington Council hosted an exchange with young trade union leaders from Kenya, Tbisili, and Georgia. The trade union leaders were on a weeklong trip with the Solidarity Center, learning about social change and how US labor unions are organizing, campaigning, and developing young leaders to take back lessons and ideas back to their home countries.
Also last week, a delegation from Sweden’s IF Metall union attended the monthly Bread and Roses DC LaborFest planning session at the Takoma Busboys and Poets. IF Metall is Sweden’s main manufacturing union and the group, hosted by the Steel Workers, was excited to learn about the annual labor arts festival and expressed interest in organizing one back in Sweden.
photos: DCNA’s Ed Smith (l) and INMO’s Liam Doran; Katie Traber (ATU 689) talks about rail/transit sector in DC in response to a question to transit from one of the delegation participants.
International Solidarity: DC Nurses Association and Irish Nurses Union Meet in Dublin; Metro Council hosts young union leaders from Kenya, Tbisili, and Georgia; Swedish delegation visits LaborFest