The Strike at the Institute of Legal Medicine in Tenerife Resumes

The employees of the Tenerife Institute of Legal Medicine (IML) are being called back to mobilize following a decision made by the strike committee, as announced on Wednesday by the Ministry of the Presidency of the Canary Islands.

In a statement, Mari Carmen de León, the General Director of Relations with the Administration of Justice, expressed regret over “the lack of willingness to negotiate” shown during yesterday’s meeting. Representatives of “some of the forensic doctors” have decided to resume the pressure measures that were halted nine days ago.

“They proposed to suspend the strike, but simultaneously presented a document where, instead of moderating their initial demands, they have increased them. Out of the nine demands, only one aligns with the three included in the January strike notice,” explained De León.

The committee’s primary demand remains the removal of the director. However, the Presidency has stated that they will not dismiss someone who is due to retire on July 5, as it would be illogical.

It is also noted that on July 17, 2023, the previous Government of the Canary Islands concluded that there was no basis to initiate disciplinary actions against him.

The General Director of Relations with the Administration of Justice emphasises that “neither the initial demands nor the mandate of this strike committee involve negotiating the working conditions of a specific group of workers.”

He clarifies that while his department is open to negotiating changes in those working conditions, it must be done within a forum that represents all forensic doctors at the IML, as these conditions impact more than just those participating in the strike.

The press release highlights the efforts made over the last ten months by the Ministry of the Presidency, in collaboration with the General Directorate of Relations with the Administration of Justice, to enhance the facilities of the IML in Tenerife, which were acknowledged as being outdated from the start.

Consequently, the Ministry is actively seeking land with the University of La Laguna (ULL) and the Ministry of Justice to construct new facilities. However, De León points out that a new building cannot be erected within a span of ten months.

Furthermore, additional staff have been recruited since August, including forensic doctors, autopsy assistants, procedural processors, and judicial assistants. Simultaneously, efforts are underway to draft a new Job List (RPT) to address longstanding staff shortages that should have been dealt with years ago.

The General Director also mentions that the budget for material procurement has tripled, and the process for requesting materials will be streamlined. This will enable IML staff to place orders directly with suppliers, under the subsequent supervision of the department.

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