GMB, the union for NHS and ambulance staff, has issued the necessary formal notices to all relevant NHS employers for strike action on 29th January 2015 in the pay dispute in England and Northern Ireland. GMB also responded to the latest statement from Department of Health ahead of further talks to avert strike action.
A 24 hour stoppage by GMB members in the ambulance service will commence at 00.01 and will continue until 23.59 on Thursday January 29th. Unison and Unite ambulance members will commence a 12hour strike from 12 noon on 29th January. GMB and the other health unions will also take strike action for Thursday 29 January 2015. This will be a 12 hour stoppage from 9am -9pm in the rest of NHS. For the other union this action will be followed by action short of strike until 24th Feb. This will be followed with a 24 hour stoppage on Wednesday 25th February 2015, time to be confirmed. GMB members have already taken part in the strike action in the NHS across England & Northern Ireland on 13th October and 24th November.
GMB conducted an official ballot of 22,000 members in the NHS in England and Northern Ireland. There was overwhelming support for industrial action to secure a better offer. The pay offer for NHS staff in England and Northern Ireland is 1% cash payment in 2014, restricted to staff not eligible for incremental progression and the same approach in 2015. This goes against the recommendation of the independent NHS Pay Review Body for a 1% consolidated pay rise for all staff.
Rehana Azam, GMB National Officer, said “It has taken months to get the talks started in the NHS pay dispute. We are all well aware the pressures on NHS staff who have worked tremendously hard despite government taking an axe to their independent pay review body recommendations. Should a tangible offer emerge as a result of these current talks GMB will take that offer back to members. We are not in a position to call the strike off until we have such an offer. Notices have been served to the relevant NHS employers today.”