(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Medical residents told the High Court of Justice on Wednesday that they agreed
without preconditions to return to negotiations with the Finance Ministry. As
the National Labor Court prevented them from resigning en masse from their
hospital posts, the young physicians realized they have lost most of their
bargaining power and have had to soften their demands.
Melcer had urged doctors to return to the negotiating table during Tuesday’s
preliminary hearing of a petition filed by residents against the labor court
ruling ordering them to return to work. In Wednesday’s response to Melcer, the
petitioners stipulated that the negotiations must take place on a daily basis
and be fixed to an intensive schedule over two weeks.
High Court gives residents deadline for negotiations
High Court debates doctor's petition for resignations
doctors want the labor accord reached with the Israel Medical Association (IMA)
at the end of August to be in effect for less time than the nine years agreed
They also want better employment conditions, fewer and shorter
night and weekend shifts and higher salaries. Resident employment terms will
also be discussed.
The Treasury spokesman said on Wednesday that the
ministry would respond only on Thursday morning, as required by the High Court,
and not before, regarding its position on reopening talks.
Amir Peretz (Labor) wrote to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu – formally the health
minister – calling on him to intervene in the labor dispute with the
Peretz, a former secretary-general of the Histadrut labor
federation, said he supports collective agreements and their legal status in
principle and thus could not criticize the agreement reached with the IMA.
However, he said that the doctors could not be forced to work in the long term
under existing conditions against their will.
“Now that the High Court of
Justice has given more time and space to solve the solution,” he told Netanyahu,
“you should get into the thick of things, because any decision taken by the High
Court will not be good for the democratic system or improve work relations in