UNISON Northern Ireland


Thousands of UNISON nursing staff will commence industrial action short of strike on Monday December 5th next. They will join thousands of other UNISON members of the direct workforce in all Health Trusts and arms length bodies in industrial action short of strike.

"UNISON members are frustrated and angry that once again they are being left behind and are now the lowest paid part of the UK NHS workforce" reported Anne Speed Head of Bargaining and Representation for UNISON Northern Ireland as she left the early morning meeting of the Health members Industrial Action Committee.

She said "they have seen and heard the remarks of the Secretary of State as he announced his setting of the financial budget for Northern Ireland. They noted while admonishing NI politicians for failing to restore the Executive and the Assembly he had nothing to say to the thousands of health workers awaiting a pay rise since last April.

We wrote two weeks ago to the Secretary of State on their behalf pointing out that pay parity had once again been broken.  He has not replied.  The assumption that health workers will just suck it up is a foolish one. They will not. They cannot afford to. The cost of living crisis is biting deep.  Workers are not willing to be pawns in the resolution of the political issues.  All trade unions want devolution restored without delay. 

Staff recruitment and retention will spiral into further difficulty.  A decent pay rise may convince those bailing out of the service to stay.  Health service users also rely on our efforts to stabilise and maintain a workforce.

Strike action is also planned for December 12th and employers will be advised in the coming days of the full scope of this action."