Build the October 13 strike

In the run up to the October 13th NHS wide strike Oxfordshire Unison health branch is producing strike bulletins to keep members informed of preparations for the strike.

The first bulletin can be downloaded from the link below and explains why we are striking, and also provides answers to questions about the rights of staff on strike, financial support for strikers, and arrangements for emergency cover.

Download strike bulletin No1.

Download strike poster

Future bulletins will include contacts for Unison stewards for advice and locations of picket lines which all members are encouraged to respect and support. Pickets will run from before 7 am until 11 am on 13th October, and will be for all unions involved in the action.  Please make arrangements now to be available to help picket your local workplace and let us know where you will be.  If you are worried about emergency cover then the best place to be is on the picket line where stewards can direct you if management request emergency support (Unison did not recieve requests in the pensions strike as local emergency services were covered without requests to Unison for dispensation for members to work).

To make the strike as effective as possible Unison is looking for contacts in all wards and departments to help coordinate alongside Unison stewards, and also volunteers to help join leafleting sessions of hospital sites.  Please contact 07503169657 if you would like to be a workplace contact or join i leafleting your workpalcePlease display the strike bulletin and poster in your workplace and circulate to your colleagues. Membership forms are available by reply to this email or the phone number above.

Read more: Build the October 13 strike

500,000 NHS staff expected to strike in October

Unison members working in the NHS in England will strike for fair pay on Monday 13 October for four hours from 7am to 11am.

This will be followed by four days of action short of a strike, on Tuesday 14 October to Friday 17 October. This action will focus on making sure members take their breaks.

The industrial action ballot, which closed on 18 September saw 68% of those taking part vote for strike action and 88% for action short of a strike.

The health service group executive considered the ballot result on Friday 19 September and recommended the industrial action on 13 October with action short of a strike for the rest of week, which leads up the the TUC and STUC demonstrations in London and Glasgow on 18 October.

UNISON wants the NHS to be properly funded so that it can have enough staff who are well motivated and fairly paid. Our campaign is for:

  • immediate payment of the 1% consolidated sum to everyone, as recommended by the NHS Pay Review Body;
  •     the living wage of £7.65 an hour for low paid staff;
  •     an above inflation pay rise for 2015-16;
  •     a commitment to future pay rises that will restore the value of NHS pay.

Read more: 500,000 NHS staff expected to strike in October

Government wants weekends and nights for no extra pay

The government has instructed the body which makes recomendations of NHS staff pay (NHS Pay Review Body) not to bother making a recommendation next year because the government has already made up its mind to continue the 0-1% plan.  A second letter tells the NHSPRB to make observations on how to move to 7-day working without any additional costs.  This is only possible with cuts in pay - most likely unsocial hours payments:
"For 2015/2016 the NHSPRB is asked to make observations on the barriers and enablers within the AfC pay system, for delivering health care services every day of the week in a financially sustainable way, i.e. without increasing the existing spend. The NHSPRB is asked to make observations on:
• affordable ‘out of hours’ working arrangements;"

At a time that staff are being asked to move to weekend and evening working, and when many core staff already work unsocial hours to ensure services are avaialable at night, weekends and bank holidays including Christmas, the attack on unsocical hours is likely to make people angrier and increase support for action in October.

Agenda for Change pay system for NHS staff: 2015 to 2016

Chief Secretary of the Treasury letter to NHSPRB 31 July 2014

Campaign against car parking charges in OHFT

Download no charging for parking petition


Ask anyone who works at any of the Oxford health Foundation Trust main sites about car parking and then brace yourself for an outpouring of frustration. Staff and managers alike report difficulty finding places to park, often impacting on their ability to get their work done in the limited time available, stressing staff out and undermining the trust’s drive to ever greater efficiency.

Read more: Campaign against car parking charges in OHFT

National demonstration for Gaza - Free Palestine

10506938 10204587519546842 7774432438289083546 oIsrael’s murderous assault on Gaza has created outrage round the world. More than 190 people have been killed in over 1,300 air strikes. Over 1000 more people have been injured.  In the latest atrocity 4 children were killed by Israeli bombs while playing football on a beach.

Israel is targetting water treatment works, health services and other vital life sustaining infrastructure as a collective punishment of Palestinian people.

Dr Mona Qasim El-Farra works in a hospital in Gaza. She said, “I am appalled that Israeli propaganda claims they don’t attack civilians.“At least 70 percent of those killed are civilians. The injured are mostly civilians. Civilians are suffering."

Around the world people are protesting aganst the the latest offensive against the Palestinian people.  In Oxfordshire 700 people demonstrated on Monday calling for an end to the bombing.

Oxfordshire Unison Health branch and the Oxfordshire CWU postal workers union leaderships are backing the national demonstration and are paying for members in Oxfordshire to go on the national march.  Oxfordshire Unison Health branch has a strong position on opposition to all forms of oppression and supports the view that the state of Israel, like Apartheid South Africa, is based on racism.

oxford palestine

National Demonstration

Sat 19th July

Assemble midday

opposite Downing Street,

Whitehall, London

(Embankment nearest tube)

to march to Israeli embassy.


 Oxford transport to march for Gaza (organised by Oxford Palestinian Solidarity Campaign)

Will be departing from Oxford at 9.30am from outside Taylorian Institute, St Giles (map).

To book a seat on the coach (£10, £5 unwaged) contact David Hillman: [email protected] or 01865721445. Download flyer

Unison Health branch members can claim back their coach fare on presentation of their coach ticket to their local steward or by calling 07503169657.


June 5 - opening shots in pay campaign

Across the UK healthworkers in UNISON, Unite and the RCN spent the day campaigning to reject this years derisory pay award that leaves all NHS staff worse off as prices contimue to rise above wages. 

Oxford's main hositals saw thousands of leaflets distributed explaining the need for fair pay in the NHS.  At the Warneford and JRII hospitals staff made their views known en masse with two protests.


NHS pay 2014

50 staff from the Oxford health Trust, NOC and Churchill hospitals joined the Warneford Hospital lunch time protest.

More Articles...

  1. The Crisis in Mental Health Services conference
  2. Press release
  3. Join the June 5th national day of action over NHS pay
  4. UNISON leaders call for ballot over NHS pay
  5. NHS pay cuts announced for 2014 and beyond

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Oct 18 flyer original

Click image to book seat on Oxfordshire transport

Free for UNISON Health branch members and family




The TUC is calling a national demonstration on October the 18th in Central London, and we want to send a message loud and clear to employers and politicians across the board that Britain needs a pay rise. That’s what a real recovery looks like.

We want you to be there but we don’t just want you to come,  we want you to bring your friends, your families, your neighbours and your workmates,  so that we make this a big and brilliant demonstration.

Here is why:

1. Poverty Pay

One in five people earn less than the living wage. For the first time more people in work are below the poverty line than those out of work.

The spread of zero-hours contracts, agency working and bogus self-employment is trapping many below the poverty line.

2. The Cost of Living Crisis

We are told that the economy is now recovering and that Britain’s costs of living crisis is over.  But whose recovery is this? Ordinary people are £40 a week worse off in real-terms than they were five years ago.

And if bankers hadn’t crashed the economy and wages growth had stayed on track then workers on average would £100 more in their pay packets every week.

3. Rising Inequality

Of course it’s not tough for everybody. In 1998 top chief executives earned 45 times the average wage – enough for anyone I’d say.

But now they earn 185 times as much.  That means they have earned what most people earn over 12 months in just a day and a half.

One key driver of the economic crash was growing pay inequality. Long before our banks went bust people’s wages had stopped growing.

This is why Britain needs a pay rise

– and it’s why we want you all to join us on the demonstration on October 18th, so we can build a real recovery to last in which everybody shares.