Thursday, January 19, 2023

Ambulance workers in Wales are on strike again, with more walkouts planned

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More than a thousand workers who are members of the Unite union go on strike for 24 hours on Thursday 19 January. Another strike is planned for January 23.

It is the first day the union has taken part in industrial action but follows two previous strikes by ambulance workers from the GMB union.

Employees leave the company in disputes over pay and working conditions. unite Members claim the offer of a below-inflation pay raise “escalated the Welsh NHS staffing crisis”.

That’s what the Welsh Government says Without more funding from Westminster, it can’t make a better offer.

There will then be 23 pickets across Wales on January 19th Unite members voted 88% to strike.

Emergency care will continue to be available on strike days, but people have been told they may not get an ambulance if they dial 999 and their circumstances are not life-threatening.

Unite Wales regional officer Richard Munn said: “Ambulance workers across Wales have had enough. They are not willing to sit back and watch as the life-saving service they provide continues to tumble into the abyss.“The stress for our members is increasing every day. Another sub-inflation wage increase is the last drop. The annual devaluation of wages, while ambulance workers face increasing pressure, has led to the current strike action. This strike is overwhelmingly the will of our members and we need the Welsh and UK Governments to take this incredibly seriously.“We accept the Welsh Government’s desire to settle this dispute, but their current proposals are clearly insufficient to end this dispute.”

In December, Health Secretary Eluned Morgan told Latest Page News Wales: “We are in a situation in Wales where we are dependent on the money that the UK Government is giving us. We are a poorer, sicker and older population than you have in England and that should be reflected in the amount of money we get.

“We need some extra cash to match any wage offer we could give NHS staff.”

Rescue workers have announced further strikes for February 6, February 20, March 6 and March 20.

The walkout will be on February 6th the first coordinated day of action as a paramedicParamedics, emergency responders and other ambulance personnel Strike alongside more than a thousand nurses who are part of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

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