Workers at Barts Health NHS Trust to strike over 30p an hour pay rise dispute

Staff at Mile End Hospital will stage three walk outs

Staff at Mile End Hospital will stage three walk outs - Credit: Archant

Contract staff working at Barts Health NHS Trust plan three separate strikes over a pay rise dispute after voting overwhelmingly to take industrial action.

Cleaners, porters and security staff, who are members of the Unite union and are employed by private company Serco, will stage the first walk out on July 4 after 99 per cent voted they should strike.

The workers are asking for a 30p an hour pay rise.

Gloria Sindall, Unite regional officer, said: “Low paid cleaners, porters and security staff have voted for strike action by a massive majority because they have seen their real living standards drop year on year. Workers are now demanding a 30p per hour wage increase. Serco made over £80 million in profit last year but managers are refusing to share these earnings fairly and protect the living standards of the workers.

“Unite members are fed up and are preparing for a series of strikes to demand a fair and proper pay rise which recognises the contribution they make to Serco and to Barts.”

Phil Mitchell, Serco contract director, said: “We remain disappointed by Unite’s actions given everything we have done to improve pay and conditions for our staff at Barts Health NHS Trust in the six months since we began our contract.

“We believe strongly in ensuring our dedicated team are rewarded fairly, which is why we agreed with the trust to pay all our team members a minimum of the London Living Wage from day one.

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“We’re determined to ensure that Unite’s intended action does not impact on patients and we aim to put robust plans in place to ensure we can continue to support the hospitals to operate as normal during any action.”

The walk outs will take place at from Whipps Cross University Hospital, Royal London Hospital, St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Mile End Hospital.

A spokeswoman for Barts Health NHS Trust added: “We have been working closely with both sides to find a resolution to this dispute, urging them to seek a solution though the mediation service ACAS.

“The trust will work with our staff and Serco to ensure that contingency plans are in place to minimise any disruption to staff and patients at our hospitals.”