News Referendum 2015

Saturday 1 October 2016

Hospital staff 'feel pressured to vote Yes'

Ryan Nugent

Published 21/05/2015 | 02:30

A poster on display in Beaumont Hospital, Dublin. Photo: Ryan Nugenta
A poster on display in Beaumont Hospital, Dublin. Photo: Ryan Nugenta

A Staff member in Beaumont Hospital says they are being pressurised with Yes campaign posters, despite the hospital stating that it is neutral on voting for referendums.

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The Dublin hospital insists that it does not allow posters from either side of the marriage referendum, despite Yes posters being on display in one of their departments, and with one staff member finding the atmosphere "unbearable".

A poster placed on the door inside the Medical Records Department said 'Medical Records is voting yes' and was accompanied by logos for the Yes campaign.

A spokesperson for the hospital said that no group or person involved in any referendum campaign approached them regarding the promotion of their prospective campaigns.

They added that posters displayed without permission were taken down.

"Beaumont Hospital does not permit posters related to voting for elections or on referendums to be posted on the hospital grounds or within the hospital itself.

"No organisation or individual from either side has sought permission from the hospital to promote their position in relation to the current referendum campaign.

"Any posters on display without permission will be removed."

Letter

But the Irish Independent received a letter from a disgruntled staff member dated May 14, while also obtaining a photograph taken on Tuesday May 19, confirming that at least one poster has been left there for close to a week.

The employee complained of a dreadful atmosphere within Beaumont, with staff being put under immense pressure to vote Yes despite Irish hospitals seeking to remain neutral on the referendum.

The overall body in charge of running Ireland's health service, the HSE, insisted that it was neutral on the referendum, but pointed out that Beaumont Hospital is run by a private board.

"They have a private board, separate to the HSE so their policies can differ to ours.

"We would have within our own policies that we respect all diversity when it comes to the referendum and we would remain neutral on these issues," said a HSE spokesperson.

Irish Independent

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