In the long running dispute with NHS Tayside, pharmacy support workers taking part in industrial action have today (5 September) reacted with fury as the process for dealing with the grading appeals has collapsed.

Unite members who have been participating in strike action since 19 August 2019 were optimistic that an end was in sight to the dispute following the establishment of a jointly agreed local job evaluation panel consisting of trained evaluators. The appeal process was scheduled to begin on Monday 2 September with the panel’s final decision, after consistency checking, to be delivered on Wednesday 4 September.

However, Unite was informed by NHS Tayside yesterday that the ‘consistency checking’ did not go ahead due to a staff side member withdrawing from the process stating that this case was ‘too high profile’ and that they did not have ‘sufficient experience’. Following this withdrawal, the process has now collapsed with industrial action set to enter its third week.

Susan Robertson, Unite regional industrial officer, said; “This really is beyond belief and a complete and utter farce! How can an NHS board the size of Tayside not fulfil its duties and complete this jointly agreed process? Pharmacy support workers are furious and it’s clear to us that NHS Tayside did not intend to deliver the job evaluation panel’s findings."

“From day one NHS Tayside has tried to wriggle out of their commitment to an independent process at every opportunity. Unite has now requested an urgent meeting with the health secretary Jeane Freeman as we believe that she is not fully aware of NHS Tayside’s outrageous and unprofessional behaviour. Pharmacy support workers were ready to go back to work today fully expecting to be awarded the banding grade they deserve. Instead, because of NHS Tayside’s incompetence, they will remain on the picket line.”


For further information or interviews contact Susan Robertson on 07885805133

  • Unite Scotland is the country’s biggest and most diverse trade union with around 150,000 members. The union is led in Scotland by Pat Rafferty.