UNISON members accept government pay offer for NHS workers in a ballot
The result was:
- Votes to accept: 67%
- Votes to reject and take further action: 32%
Although it does not go far enough, it is an improvement and it will make a difference particularly to over 250,000 of the lowest-paid in the NHS," says UNISON head of health Christina McAnea.
UNISON health members in England were consulted on a new pay offer from employers following talks with the Department of Health. This means that the 12-hour strike 29 January was suspended to allow the consultation to take place - along with the month-long action short of a strike and the 24-hour strike planned for 25 February.
The offer includes a consolidated pay rise for staff on all pay points up to pay point 34, but with a one year increment freeze for staff on pay point 34 and above..
UNISON head of health Christina McAnea, who is also lead negotiator for the joint health unions, praised the commitment of UNISON members, saying: "The two strike days staged by health workers last year have moved the government to negotiate with the unions.
"These new proposals deliver pay rises of between 5.6% and 2.2% for more than 200,000 of the lowest paid workers in the NHS. On top of that, we got additional important concessions for ambulance staff. While the offer doesn't go far enough to meet our claim," added Ms McAnea, "the changes are not insignificant - it is important that our members get to decide to accept or reject them. If they choose to reject them, we will move to further industrial action."
NHS pay: pickets at New Cross hospital
It is the third round of action over the government's decision to reject the 1% pay rise for NHS staff as recommended by the independent Pay Review Body in 2014 and over most being denied a pay increase in 2015/16.
NHS workers in England from UNISON, UNITE & GMB and 8 other unions went on strike 7am - 11 am Monday 24 November and took action short of a strike from Tuesday through to Sunday 30 November. Health members made sure they took their breaks and refused to work for free by not doing unpaid overtime.
Fri 21 Nov14 - MPs voted in favour of the plan to roll back privatisation in the NHS.
read more information about the strike and pay dispute here....
National Health Service (Amended Duties and Powers) Bill 2014-15 is through to the next stage in parliament, and if it eventually becomes law it will amend some of the most controversial bits of the Health and Social Care Act 2012 and exempt the NHS from the EU-US trade deal TTIP.
241 MPs voted for it and only 18 MPs voted against. It looks like the government told their MPs to boycott the vote. Maybe they realised they couldn't win..?
click for UNISON guide to influencing the new NHS