As the first notices of suspension without pay started going out to healthcare professionals who refuse to be vaccinated against Covid-19, the Union of Public Hospital Workers (POEDIN) on Wednesday urged colleagues to go get the shot but also lashed out against the measure.
“We appeal to all our colleagues to book a vaccination appointment, even in the final days,” the union said in an announcement as the September 1 deadline for health workers to get vaccinated or book an appointment to do so expired on Wednesday.
Adding, however, that it will “not allow colleagues to lose their jobs,” POEDIN also announced a work stoppage from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday and rallies at the Health Ministry in downtown Athens, at the Macedonia & Thrace Ministry in the northern port city of Thessaloniki and at hospitals in other parts of the country, indicating that this is just the beginning of its protest action.
POEDIN also called on the government to freeze the measure for a couple of weeks, saying that some 2,000 healthcare workers have booked an appointment for a shot in the past few days, while warning that the suspensions will lead to significant shortages at the country’s already stretched hospitals.
“We will not accept the complete disorganization of the National Health System as a result of the mandatory [vaccination] measure that was imposed without cause,” it warned.