Nurses protest at Croke Park

Nurses are staging a protest at Croke Park in Dublin this morning against what they call the exploitation of new entrants.

Under a new HSE plan, 1,000 nursing graduates will be hired by the HSE, but will be paid 80% of the going salary, as the moratorium on hiring in the sector is lifted.

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) said that it will result in agency workers being replaced by underpaid graduates.

Sarah Byrne, a recently qualified nurse, said that the treatment of graduates may well lead to mass emigration.

"It's disgraceful the way that newly-qualified nurses are being treated with this new pay scale," she said.

"We work so hard and try our best with everything we do.

"They're coming in, they're going to be doing the same work that everyone else does.

"Just because they're less experienced, at the end of the day they're still going to work the same job. So I can see now why people would maybe go further."

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