Lab workers at Nicosia general hospital will stage a 24-hour strike this Thursday, citing an unsafe work environment due to toxic fumes.

Peo, Sek and Pasydy unions said on Saturday “it is unthinkable that in a lab where cancer diagnosis tests are being carried out, authorities do not take any measures to prevent it.”

It said the ventilation system and extractors do not work properly at the Nicosia general hospital histopathology lab.

As such, lab staff are exposed to toxic fumes, exposing them to a chemical hazard.

Employees have to deal with consequences such as “burning eyes, dry eyes, coughing, dizziness and bitter taste. The chronic and accumulated effects of chemicals can cause serious health problems for employees,” unions charged.

The statement argued that both the state health services (Okypy) and the labour inspection department carried out studies that “identified direct and indirect risks” for lab workers.

According to the unions, they have repeatedly asked Okypy to take action but to no avail.

As such, they will go on a 24-hour strike on Thursday “as they continue to work in a dangerous and unsafe environment.”