Hunger Strike Lifeguard Taken To Hospital

February 16, 2013

photo DiariodeAvisos

Veronica Rodriguez the lifeguard who has been on hunger strike was transferred to hospital by ambulance after suffering a migraine attack and low blood pressure on Thursday.

She hasn’t eaten in 17 days in protest at not being paid for 6 months.

The Arona Council maintains in press statements by Environment councillor Antonio Sosa,  that they are not responsible for the back pay.

According to fellow lifeguard Nicolás Gómez, minutes before Veronica’s health deteriorated people from the Ayuntamiento had arrived at the beach to check if minimum services were still being provided.

Apparently there was an argument between the two.

The provision of minimum services was one of the conditions of the original strike. In Spain wild cat strikes are illegal; strikes have to be previously advised and appropriate minimum services maintained where applicable if so decreed by labour tribunals.

To complicate matters the subcontractor originally providing the service has gone into receivership.

“If something serious happens we don’t have the resources” said Veronica, “The minimum service leaves only six of the 18 strong team to attend the beaches. We have been updating the necessary equipment such as oxygen or key things in the first aid box with the help of donations from members of the public” she went on .

The lifeguards have reported the current state of affairs to the Ministry of Labour, asking them to “reconsider the requirement for provision of minimum services”.  “We believe that this is nonsense and even inhuman, expecting us to come to work without receiving any wages for six months” ” said Veronica, who spent Friday at home, but  returned to the lifesavers station at Las Vistas beach on Saturday.

She says she is surprised that for 6 months Arona council have made no statement to the public and, she believes they only do so now, following the outcry in the media and on social networks, forums and in English newspapers.

Veronica who now rightly admits that her health is more important than anything else,  says on her Facebook page, “how can they say they (Arona council) are not obliged to meet the back pay and then come to the lifeguard station and start telling me what we must and mustn’t do, if they’re not responsible for our situation then they cant be in charge. When one of them told me to keep quiet I just flipped!”

Veronica is now back at the beach.

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