No one in the health service takes strike action lightly – today shows just how desperate they are, says GMB Union
More than 10,000 ambulance workers have voted to strike in nine trusts across England and Wales.
Paramedics, Emergency Care Assistants, call handlers and other staff are now set to walk out in the following trusts:
- South West Ambulance Service
- South East Coast Ambulance Service
- North West Ambulance Service
- South Central Ambulance Service
- North East Ambulance Service
- East Midlands Ambulance Service
- West Midlands Ambulance Service
- Welsh Ambulance Service
- Yorkshire Ambulance Service
Workers across the ambulance services and some NHS Trusts have voted to strike over the Government’s imposed 4 per cent pay award – another massive real terms pay cut.
GMB will now meet with reps in the coming days to discuss potential strike dates before Christmas.
Rachel Harrison, GMB National Secretary, said, “Ambulance workers – like other NHS workers – are on their knees.
“Demoralised and downtrodden, they’ve faced twelve years Conservative cuts to the service and their pay packets, fought on the frontline of a global pandemic and now face the worst cost of living crisis in a generation.
“No one in the NHS takes strike action lightly – today shows just how desperate they are.
“This is as much about unsafe staffing levels and patient safety as it is about pay. A third of GMB ambulance workers think delays they’ve been involved with have led to the death of a patient.
“Something has to change or the service as we know it will collapse.
“GMB calls on the Government to avoid a Winter of NHS strikes by negotiating a pay award that these workers deserve.”
The union’s general secretary, Christina McAnea added, “The decision to take action and lose a day’s pay is always a tough call. It’s especially challenging for those whose jobs involve caring and saving lives.
“But thousands of ambulance staff and their NHS colleagues know delays won’t lessen, nor waiting times reduce, until the Government acts on wages. That’s why they’ve taken the difficult decision to strike.
“Patients will always come first and emergency cover will be available during any strike but, unless NHS pay and staffing get fixed, services and care will continue to decline.”
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