Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1164/33657
From The Socialist newspaper, 25 January 2022
Barts NHS workers strike back
For a 15% pay rise for all
Bring back outsourced services
Barts NHS Trust workers striking for decent pay, photo Paul Mattsson (Click to enlarge)
'Why we're striking'
Unite Shop Steward Barts Health Trust
Nearly 600 health workers employed at Bart's health trust across three hospitals - Royal London, Whipps Cross and St Barts - are striking for fair pay, and against increasing workloads and bullying.
Following a massive 97% vote for action the workers, member of Unite the Union, are walking out for two weeks from 31 January to 13 February.
They provide essential services as cleaners, porters, patient food catering workers, reception staff, and security guards.
Picket lines will take place every day at each hospital with rallies taking place at midday at the Royal London on 31 January, Barts hospital on 2 February and at Whipps Cross on 4 February.
Employed by private company Serco, the workers' pay claim for 15% reflects the pay gap between these outsourced workers and those directly employed by the NHS doing the same jobs. The threat of strike action alone has forced the bosses to raise their derisory 1% pay offer to 3%, but this has also been rejected, especially given that RPI inflation has just jumped to 7.5%.
A porter told the Socialist: "We haven't got smaller shopping bills or rents than workers employed directly by the NHS doing the same jobs. It simply is unfair and that's why we have to take action."
Serco has made huge profits from the failed test-and-trace debacle and had a turnover of £3.9 billion according to the latest figures available.
The company has given the NHS Trust 18 months' notice that it will be ending the contract in April 2023.
We also demand that the trust board bring these workers and services back in-house as soon as possible.
Barts bosses, having privatised these services, bear responsibility for the situation that has developed. They must now intervene to ensure the union's pay claim is met in full.
Also, that the years of outsourcing are ended and that the workers are given full NHS pay, terms and conditions.
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In The Socialist 25 January 2022:
What we think
We need a workers' alternative to big business Tories and Labour
Lords reject parts of anti-protest bill
News in brief
Social care providers put profit before residents' needs - nationalise care now
Cost of living
Cost of living crisis
Trade unions and the cuts
Trade unions and the fight against council cuts
Barts NHS workers strike back
Sheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally
Oaks Park School: valiant strike exposed state of schools
Education: Workload and inflation goes up, incomes fall
DWP reps demand action from PCS leadership
10,000 tube workers vote to strike - don't make workers pay for TfL funding crisis
Strike action by Carmarthenshire winter gritters wins concessions from council
Universities: Strike action at 68 in two disputes
Worksop Wincanton logistics workers begin ninth week of strike action
Trade unionists in the USA fighting back
Hundreds protest to save St Mary's Leisure Centre in Southampton
Wakefield TUSC - Fighting for low-paid workers and NHS
Eviction resistance on the march in Waltham Forest
This is students' chance to fight back - help build 2 March NUS walkout
Selling the Socialist
Britain's waterways choked with a 'chemical cocktail'
War in Yemen, made in Harlow, profit for rich
Somers 'slaughterhouse' Forge
UK Covid-19 mortality similar to Spanish Flu
It's my party, and I'll lie if I want to
The Socialist 25 January 2022 |
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