UNISON National

Violence against health workers unacceptable, says UNISON

Commenting on new research published today (Monday) by the TUC that says health employees are the most likely to experience violence at work, UNISON head of health Christina McAnea said:

“Sadly these figures confirm the evidence from the NHS itself that the level of violence against medical and health care workers is unacceptably high.

“It’s especially bad in some sectors. Ambulance staff are up to three times more likely to be assaulted, especially when people have been drinking.

“Mental health workers are at particular risk as staffing cuts have lead to more attacks. And the drop in police numbers means they have fewer officers to respond when assaults are reported.

“The levels of violence have barely changed in years. There needs to be serious action from the government and employers to tackle this. We have long been calling on ministers to set up a special taskforce to investigate how to make workplaces safer for dedicated NHS staff.”

Notes to editors:

– The TUC research can be found on the TUC website.

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Sophie Goodchild T: 0207 121 5546 M: 07767 325595 E: s.goodchild@unison.co.uk

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Liz Chinchen T: 0207 121 5463 M: 07778 158175 E: l.chinchen@unison.co.uk

Fatima Ayad T: 0207 121 5255 M: 07508 080383 E: f.ayad@unison.co.uk