One of the areas that COVID-19 affected is the cleaning services at hospitals and operating theatres and other health facilities in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI).
Because of the associated financial crisis, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is not able to pay companies that hire cleaners of hospitals.
Today, June 10th, 2021, more than 120 cleaners demonstrated in front of the Dr Khalid Hospital in Koya. They protested the inability of the KRG and the contracted companies to pay their salaries for more than 6 months.
The workers have continued to work over those 6 months without a salary. Those workers have reported that they were worried that if they boycott work, their positions will be filled by others who are willing to work as volunteers in the hope that those volunteers would be employed more permanently in the future.
MBChB, MPH, MRCP (UK), MRCPE, PhD
HIFA profile: Goran Zangana is a medical doctor and Associate Research Fellow with the Middle East Research Institute, Iraq. He is a HIFA country representative for Iraq and is currently based in the UK.
goran.zangana AT meri-k.org