Wide screen devices may view this page better by clicking here

22 September 2021

Facebook   Twitter

Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

NHS workers reject 3% insult

Unions must coordinate strike ballots now

Photo: Paul Mattsson

Photo: Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

GMB

Holly Johnston, GMB rep and NHS workers say no

GMB union members have voted 93% in favour of rejecting the 3% pay deal for NHS workers, triggering the union to go straight to an industrial action ballot. We need to keep the pressure on in all the health unions to co-ordinate ballots for strikes. We have seen encouraging turnouts so far across the board and need to act on the overwhelming reject figures decisively and quickly.

Another consultative ballot would risk causing ballot fatigue. The results we are seeing suggest there is enough of an appetite for strike ballots now, and delaying may lead to a decrease in the turnout.

GMB hasn't released its turnout figures, but there are indications of a turnout well over 50% in some areas. Turnout in the consultative ballot of Royal College of Nursing (RCN) members was 25.4%, with 91.7% voting to reject. This is the highest ever turnout for a consultative ballot in RCN.

We need to see joint decisive action from our unions. We call on the unions to move to formal industrial action ballots and coordinate big campaigns to help mobilise the numbers we need to reach the threshold set out by the Tory anti-trade union laws.

We need strike ballots now, to give confidence to our members and send a clear message to this government that NHS workers have reached our limit, and we are willing to take action for ourselves, our patients and the future of the NHS.

Unison

NHS workers organised in Unison have voted to reject the Tories' insulting 3% pay offer in a consultative ballot. 80% of those who voted opposed the real-terms pay cut, demonstrating the depth of anger among staff.

The growing mood for change cannot risk being derailed. Unison should now move to an industrial action ballot to demonstrate to both members and the government our willingness to fight. Socialist Party members on the Unison health service group executive have argued for this approach; delaying is only diluting the mood of anger.

Unfortunately, a move to ballot now was defeated by the right-wing majority on the health executive.

As the Socialist goes to press, Unison health conference is ongoing. Socialist Party members supported an emergency motion arguing for the conference to overturn the position of the health executive, forcing the leadership to move straight to an industrial action ballot.

Undemocratically, the Unison health leadership ruled emergency motions out of order, denying delegates the opportunity to overturn its decision. The deadline for motions to the conference closed weeks ago, long before the health executive's decision to delay.

Tory anti-trade union laws mean that any strike ballot needs to have a turn-out of over 50%, with a majority voting to strike. The turnout in Unison's pay consultation did not reach this threshold but the union leadership's inaction meant many workers were unaware the online consultation was even taking place!

The best way to ensure that the threshold is met is to build the momentum, go to an industrial action ballot, and back this up with a concerted campaign, using the full weight of the union's resources. This means workplace leafleting, mass meetings and linking with other health unions. The leaderships of the health unions must come together immediately to coordinate strike ballots across the NHS.

Socialist Party members in Unison health

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 22 September 2021:


What we think

Workers' politics won't come from Labour


News

Working class under attack

NHS workers reject 3% insult

Energy market chaos makes the case for nationalisation

Tory cuts to Universal Credit: we need a union fightback

Interview: Bakers' union to vote on Labour disaffiliation

Tax fraud could be over 20 billion annually

Life expectancy falls - a condemnation of capitalism


Feature

Socialists and the four-day week


Occupy

10 years since Occupy


Workplace news

End the teaching workload crisis

MOJ pay deal accepted - we demand 10%

Workers at 13 colleges to strike over pay

New strike dates in EMR guards dispute

Stop press: Sparks walk out

Oaks Park strikers call eleven days' more action


International

German general election


Campaigns

Unemployment, low pay, rip-off uni fees, climate change... Join the fight for Socialism

Yorkshire Youth Fight for Jobs relaunched

W Sussex 'disability tax' - protest not going away

Fighting evictions in Cornwall

Leeds taxi drivers and disabled passengers unite to fight station changes

Socialist Students: Youth lit up when they saw us

York: Non-binary and trans rights protest


Readers' opinion

TV Review - Help: Heart-wrenching portrayal of Covid care home crisis

Gleision mine deaths: Still fighting for justice

Corbyn had a social care plan

Who pays for the climate crisis?

Famine in Madagascar


 

Home   |   The Socialist 22 September 2021   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

NHS:

triangleTories to blame for GP crisis

triangleSocial care funding needed now

triangleBarking NHS: "Sorry, please try again later"

triangleUnite health members say no to 3% and vote for action

trianglePay NHS and care staff to address worker shortages

Strike:

triangleScunthorpe scaffs strike for pay

triangleReinstate Gary Evans! Llanelli postal workers strike

triangleGwent valleys Stagecoach bus drivers strike for fair pay

triangleUniversity workers ballot for strike action

Unions:

triangleCOP26: Trade unions must fight for a socialist transition to renewables

triangleFlexibility to suit workers not the bosses

triangleNEU deputy general secretary election

Workers:

triangleFight to defend homelessness services

triangleBrighton bin workers' victory in sight against Green-led council

Health:

triangle60 steelworks scaffs march in second week of all-out strike

Unison:

triangleWho runs Unison: lay members or the paid officials?

GMB:

triangleBrighton waste workers walk out

RCN:

triangleNorthern Ireland: Thousands of nurses continue to strike for better pay

Article dated 22 September 2021

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

MEMBER RESOURCES

Pay in Fighting Fund

Pay in paper and book sales

Leaflets

Bulk book orders

New member submission

WHAT'S ON

triangle21 Oct West London Socialist Party: Youth demand a future

triangle21 Oct Cardiff East Socialist Party: Why socialists builds internationally

triangle21 Oct South West London Socialist Party: After the protests, what way forward for Cuba?

More...


The Socialist, weekly newspaper of the Socialist Party

Subscribespacer|spacerebook / Kindlespacer|spacerPDF versionspacer|spacerText / Printspacer|spacer1152 onlinespacer|spacerBack issuesspacer|spacer Audio files


In a world facing crisis on every front, discussion on how socialist ideas can change the world is more necessary than ever. Buy a ticket now for the Socialism 2021 weekend, 19 to 21 November.

What We Stand For
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Platform setting: =

Desktop version