Nurses will be among those taking to the picket lines at the start of next month as the union Unite has announced further strike dates in England.
Unite members at Guys and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust will stage a 24-hour strike, beginning at 7am on Thursday 1 June.
“The current pay deal does not address the fundamental problems undermining the NHS”
This will be followed by a strike by members at the Yorkshire Ambulance Trust, who will walk out between 2pm-10pm on Friday 2 June.
Unite was among the unions in England that rejected the most recent pay offer, following negotiations with the government.
The union hosted two strike days across several trust in England earlier this month, which coincided with strike action from the Royal College of Nursing.
The two unions remain in dispute with the government over the current pay deal, despite the NHS Staff Council voting to collectively accept the offer.
The deal includes a 5% pay rise for 2023-24 and a one-off payment of at least £1,655. This is on top of the average 4.75% pay rise NHS staff had received in 2022-23.
The next round of strikes from Unite are part of plans to escalate the pay dispute with the government and pressure ministers to re-open pay negotiations.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Our members are returning to the picket lines in targeted industrial action to place further pressure on the government to re-open pay negotiations.
“The current pay deal does not address the fundamental problems undermining the NHS.
“It is disappointing some Unite members are continuing strike action”
“Workers have suffered real terms pay cuts for over a decade and can no longer afford to make ends meet, resulting in experienced staff leaving the NHS in droves.”
Meanwhile, Unite national lead officer, Onay Kasab, said: “Our members are entirely committed to their jobs but can no longer stand idly by as they watch the NHS crumble around them, which is placing patients in danger on a daily basis.”
Separately, the RCN announced this week that it had opened a new strike ballot, which will ask almost 300,000 nursing staff across England whether they are prepared to take further strike action over the next six months.
This comes after the union’s mandate for strike action ran out earlier this month.
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: “It is disappointing some Unite members are continuing strike action– these strikes will put more pressure on the NHS and will be disruptive for patients.
“Most unions on the NHS Staff Council voted to accept our pay offer and we hope the unions who choose to remain in dispute – despite many of their members also voting to accept this offer – will recognise this as a fair outcome that carries the support of their colleagues and decide it is time to bring industrial action to an end.”