Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Union claims health pay talks kill morale

07:24 05 September 2012

Trades union members and local NHS workers demonstrate outisde Barnstaple hospital on Wednesday.

Trades union members and local NHS workers demonstrate outisde Barnstaple hospital on Wednesday.


As Unison members and NHS workers demonstrate outside Barnstaple hospital, they warn a move to look at staff pay and conditions will lead to a ‘second rate service’.

UNION members demonstrating outside Barnstaple hospital have called on health trust bosses to withdraw from a consortium looking at staff pay and conditions.

They claim the result of discussions by the South West Pay, Terms and Conditions Consortium could see NHS workers in the region losing up to 15 per cent of their income through cuts to pay, annual leave, sick pay and increased hours.

On Wednesday Unison organised the lobbying demo at North Devon District Hospital to coincide with the monthly board meeting of Northern Devon Healthcare Trust.

The trust is one of 20 in the South West to spend £10,000 and join the consortium, which unions have labelled a ‘pay cartel’ and say is engaged in ‘gunboat diplomacy’.

The consortium has released two discussion documents outlining the financial problems facing the NHS and looking at 28 suggestions on ways money might be saved through changes to staff terms and conditions.

Mark Harper, North Devon Unison branch secretary, told the Gazette it was just one more thing which had ‘broken the backs’ of NHS staff.

“The pay cartel was formed behind the backs of staff and there’s a loss of trust there,” he said.

“I believe it is a way of bringing in regional pay and will lead to worse pay and conditions for the South West than the rest of the country, which will make it more difficult to attract staff.

“It comes on the back of a two year pay freeze and we have already had experience of cuts. Morale among staff is very low as we are just reeling from one blow to the next and we will fight this using every method at Unison’s disposal.”

Trudie Brailey, an assistant practitioner from Honiton and a member of Staff Side, a joint trade union committee, said it could results in patients and public seeing a second rate service.

“It will isolate the South West – we are already struggling to recruit staff and who would want to come and work here if they were on different terms and conditions?” she asked.

“I cannot fathom why you would want to restrict the people you employ. We know there is already difficulty in recruiting registered nurses, it is absolutely dire.”


Other News Stories


The faces of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton will be on display in pumpkin form at North Devon’s Big Sheep as part of a Halloween spectacular.

Read more

The mum-of-four’s son was rushed to hopsital when he suffered sepsis - and the outcome could have been worse if services were moved to Exeter..

Read more

The Blue Light Car Wash at Clovelly raised a healthy total for Refugee Rescue on Sunday

Read more
Yesterday, 16:10

Abseilers do their bit to help the hospital charity Over and Above

Read more
Yesterday, 16:04

Devon County Council says many arrived ‘with just the clothes on their backs’ and urgently need a range of clothing

Read more
Yesterday, 13:24

The couple will be entering their best Nordman Fir into the British Christmas Tree Growers Association’s annual competition in Swansea tomorrow (Wednesday).

Read more
Yesterday, 10:14

Find out what’s going on in Bideford this October half term with the full Wicked Week programme here.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:18

Barnstaple hotelier completes huge renovations, gutting the restaurant and bar and completely revamping the bedrooms - take a look inside.

Read more
Mon, 13:19

Police said a person dressed in black wearing a ski mask fled from the scene after front door of property was shot.

Read more
Mon, 12:37

Barnstaple Pannier Market, Sunday, November 6

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 9°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up


Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications