UNISON Northern Ireland


Responding to a request from the new Health Minister, Anne Speed  UNISON’s Head of Bargaining and Lead Secretary of the Joint Trade Union Group of  Health Unions has agreed to lead a delegation to meet him on Tuesday 14th January .

Anne Speed said “We congratulate the Minister on his election. This prompt move by Minister Swann is recognition that the determination and courage of thousands of health workers has made the health service the key priority for our new government.  There is little doubt that it also created positive political movement.

Everyone in the Health workforce has played their part and sustained a historic campaign of action since 25th November 2019.  From nurses to cleaners and cooks, from porters to occupational therapists, from paramedics to clerical workers, from home care workers to transport drivers  and all grades in between, they have stood up for their rights and the rights of their patients.

We will be raising these key issues:

  • We will be asking the Minister to take oversight responsibility in relation to the restoration of pay parity;
  • We will be calling on the Permanent Secretary to seek early and comprehensive engagement on  a plan and funding for safe staffing; 
  • We will be reminding the Chief Executives of all Trusts and health bodies of their declared public support for health workers and calling on them to strongly pursue delivery of much needed and substantial investment.

The bona fides of the commitments given to health workers by the Secretary of State and the parties forming the new Executive will be directly tested in the coming days. We anticipate a positive outcome.”