Industrial action closer as union’s NHS reps recommend rejection of the current pay offer

Unite the union has confirmed that its health sector representatives will be recommending rejection of the Scottish Government’s 5 per cent NHS pay offer following a meeting in Glasgow today (16 June).

Unite represents workers in every pay band across the entire NHS structure. The union says that the current pay offer represents a significant real-terms pay cut for health service workers when the broader cost of living has hit a forty-year high of 11.1 per cent.

The trade union will now consult its members on rejecting the offer and on a potential industrial action ballot throughout July.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Unite’s NHS Scotland workers have made it crystal clear that the current offer on the table is a substantial real terms pay cut, and it is unacceptable.

“This pay offer certainly won’t address the current cost of living crisis facing our members. The Scottish Government needs to return with an acceptable offer to our NHS workers or face potential industrial action by our members, who will have the full support of their union in this fight for fair pay.”

Unite’s NHS Scotland members will join others in the public sector in rejecting pay offers. Unite is currently balloting local government workers over a 2 per cent pay offer with the ballots set to close on 26 July while Marine Scotland workers are currently involved in industrial action this week in a pay dispute.

James O’Connell, Unite regional officer said: “Unite’s NHS representatives have formally recommended rejection of the current pay offer. Staff are exhausted, morale is at an all-time low, it’s time to recognise our NHS staff and pay them as if we care for them the same way as they care for us”

“We would urge the Cabinet Secretary to re-engage with the trade unions and to re-open the pay discussions. If not, Unite will be left with no option but to canvass thousands of our NHS Scotland members in the coming weeks over industrial action.”


Notes to Editor

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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.