On Monday healthworkers across England united to fight the government attacks on NHS pay. Nurses, porters, midwives, ambulance crews, cooks, cleaners, receptionist, medical secretaries, technicians, estates and many others joined the strike, with many thousands taking part in pickets of their workplaces.
In Oxford over 300 people took part in pickets at the JRII, Churchill, Horton, NOC, Warneford, Abigndon, Litlemore, and Wallingford hospitals, with additional pickets at East Oxford health centre and Manzil Way offices in East Oxford.
Now we have 4 days of working to rule where UNISON is calling on members to take their breaks and to leave work on time. NHS staff are estimated to give tens of millions of hours of unpaid labour each year - yet their pay is shrinking!
Up to 500,000 NHS staff in Unison, Unite, GMB and Royal College of Midwives will be on strike between 7 am and 11 am this coming Monday 13th October.
Striking staff will be standing up to a government that has cut NHS wages by 10% and is wrecking the NHS with cuts and privatisation. Not content with years of pay freezes, the government now wants to cut unsocial hours pay. Enough is enough.
Everyone who wants to defend the NHS and stop the fall in living standards should join the strike on Monday.
The Oxford University Trust is claiming that certain exemptions from strike action have been agreed with UNISON. This is not the case. Members do NOT need to phone Firstcare to report their absence nor do they need to tell their managers they are striking.
Please would ALL members employed by Oxford Health Trust, Oxford University Hospitals Trust, and Southern Health Trust, proceed to strike action 7am - 11am as the strike ballot mandates.
There will be pickets at the following locations and members are asked to join the picket lines at:
Pickets are shown on the map here
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.
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 in leafleting your workpalce. Please 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.
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.
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:
The Health Service Group Executive of UNISON has submitted an emergency motion to the UNISON Health conference calling for NHS members to be balloted over the government imposed pay deal which will see over 2/3rds of NHS staff get no pay rise this year, with the remainder getting a below inflation rise worth less than 1%.