Nurses’ strike poll: Who’s Pat Cullen?

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he Royal Faculty of Nursing’s normal secretary Pat Cullen has mentioned nursing is in her blood.

She is the youngest of six ladies, 4 of whom went on to change into nurses.

She additionally has a brother whom her household tried to persuade to change into a nurse “however he wasn’t having any of it”, she has mentioned.

Ms Cullen grew up in Carrickmore in Co Tyrone in Northern Eire. She failed her GCSEs and was unable to proceed to A-levels so went to school as a substitute after which grew to become a trainee nurse.

In an interview with the Belfast Telegraph in 2019, she described beginning her profession in psychological well being nursing, from the place she grew to become an assistant director of psychological well being providers {and professional} head of nursing.

I am unable to think about some other profession that may have fulfilled me professionally or personally as a lot

She instructed the newspaper: “I can truthfully say that I beloved on daily basis of working in psychological well being. I can’t think about some other profession that may have fulfilled me professionally or personally as a lot.

“I began out working in hospital earlier than transferring into the neighborhood, which was simply mind-blowing and a privilege to take care of individuals in their very own properties.”

Ms Cullen, who’s additionally a registered psychotherapist, was a neighborhood psychiatric nurse in Twinbrook and Poleglass through the Troubles and has mentioned “the impression of the violence on psychological well being was surprising”.

Married with youngsters, Ms Cullen had additional roles, together with deputy director of nursing, security, high quality and affected person expertise within the Northern Eire Public Well being Company (PHA), and dealing on the Northern Eire Well being and Social Care Board (HSCB).

She has additionally labored as the manager director of nursing and allied well being professions throughout the PHA and HSCB.

In Might 2019, she grew to become director of RCN Northern Eire, having began working for the RCN in 2016.

In October 2019, RCN Northern Eire took the unprecedented step of balloting members on industrial motion, together with strike motion, over pay and low staffing ranges.

The union mentioned that, regardless of intensive negotiations, it was unable to get motion from the Division of Well being or Secretary of State to deal with points over pay and to start discussions on secure staffing

Some 92% of members voted in favour of strike motion, which happened in December 2019 and January 2020.

Ms Cullen was seen as key to mobilising workers over the strike, and spent appreciable time visiting their workplaces and making the RCN’s case within the media.

Now, as a part of the broader RCN, Ms Cullen has spent the summer time touring NHS workplaces to encourage nurses to vote in favour of a UK-wide poll.

The union is recommending its 300,000 members stroll out over pay, with the results of the poll due subsequent month.


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