The latest GM from the IPU seems to take the approach that you catch more flies with sugar than vinegar. If the flies are the HSE/PCRS then they needn’t bother. The Executive seems to have lost any connection that they have with members. While many might not be up for a fully fledged fight the last thing they want to do is just roll over.
There are a number of things that the IPU should be doing now. Firstly they should be looking at ways of taking back control of the levy. We all have direct debits with them for our fees so it should not be beyond their ability to set up an automated method of invoicing the levy directly to members and then collecting the money by direct debit. I’ve heard some moaning that not everybody will sign up for a new system. But I’ve heard arguments like this before and they didn’t hold up then. If they don’t pay the levy then they can negotiate direct with the PCRS themselves. Let’s see how quickly the PCRS gives them any leeway if they have any dispute without the IPU behind them.
Next they should demand some quid pro quo for reentering talks. Sorry I should have put the PIP. But the Northern Ireland analogy is a good one here. Even if we get the PCRS to agree to talks about talks the point will be made. And what is wrong about getting some outside help on this. The IPU can afford it and it is slightly arrogant to think that they can do everything in house.
I’ve been told that any meetings with the PCRS end up nearly as shouting matches. They see all pharmacists as crooks and thieves. Well the feeling is mutual. I see them all as bullies and gangsters. I think that we should call them out on this, publically if necessarily. We have no time for anybody defrauding the system. The PCRS have the powers to go and investigate and inspect premises and books of anybody that the suspect of fraud. Let them put up or shut up!
The Executive seem determined to use the Frank Sinatra method, I Did It My Way. They are in danger of losing the support of a great number of their members if it has not happened already. This is unsustainable in a democratic organisation. If they don’t pay heed to their members there will be hell to pay.