Staff at Bradford Hospitals Trust strike over privatisation plans

Two-week action to oppose two-tier workforce

More than 300 porters, domestics, security and catering staff at the Bradford Teaching Hospitals Trust will strike for two weeks from today (Thursday) 1 to Thursday 15 August, to oppose plans to outsource their jobs.

The workers believe pay and pensions will suffer as part of a drive to cut costs if roles are transferred to a wholly owned subsidiary company (subco), being set up by the trust.

These companies don’t have to honour NHS contracts and are free to pay employees less than NHS staff doing the same jobs, creating a damaging two-tier system that’s no good for staff or patients, says UNISON.

The August strike follows a week of industrial action in July that saw workers come together with the local community to oppose the backdoor privatisation of health services across the trust.

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “Staff are taking this action to ensure the NHS keeps its highly motivated and committed workforce together, working for the people of Bradford, not for the directors of a private company.

“It doesn’t reflect well on the trust that staff who are proud to be part of the NHS have to take to the streets to convince the trust that patients and staff come before profits.”

Notes to editors:
– Staff will be outside St Luke’s and Bradford Royal Infirmary from 6am on Thursday 1 August.
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services – in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in both the public and private sectors.

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