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Portuguese nurses to stage walkout over pay, conditions

June 1, 2015

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Portuguese nurses have announced a 48-hour strike this week over pay and conditions that is expected to cause widespread disruption to the country’s national health service.

The Portuguese Nurses’ Union said Monday the walkout is another protest against a 2013 increase in their working week to 40 hours from 35, a reduction in overtime pay and a freeze on promotions. The strike is scheduled for June 4 and 5.

The center-right government took those measures as part of cuts required in return for a 78 billion-euro ($85 billion at current exchange rates) rescue deal in 2011 from the eurozone and International Monetary Fund. Those austerity policies are still in place.

Under a 1994 law, striking medical workers must provide minimum services to ensure no lives are put in danger.

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