Health Secretary may take legal action over next nurses strike
Health / Sat 22nd Apr 2023 at 02:35pm
THE health secretary has said he is pursuing legal action over the lawfulness of the next strike by NHS nurses in England reports the BBC.
Steve Barclay’s decision to challenge the Royal College of Nursing’s right to stage a 48-hour walkout from 30 April follows a request from hospital bosses.
The RCN argues the strike falls within the required six-month period from when votes were cast.
NHS Employers says it has legal advice that the action would be unlawful.
If the court agrees then the RCN would not be protected by trade union laws and the strike may need to be called off.
NHS Employers says it believes ballots closed at midday on 2 November 2022, meaning action on 2 May – the last day of the planned strike – would not be covered by the strike mandate.
This kind of administrative error by RCN could have been easily avoided by shifting the strike date back a day. It seems to me the RCN bosses didn't want to progress the strike after nurses rejected the offer. RCN didn't make a recommendation on the rejected pay deal because the stress of organising strike action got too much for them and the realisation that the government would not improve the offer.
If the NHS employers and the government think stopping the strike action rather than addressing the fundamental problems of the nhs then they are sadly deluded. By the time, if ever they realize the devastating consequences of the privatisation by stealth policy most of doctors and nurses will have probably moved to Australia, none will want to come here and most of the potential next generation will choose different professions. Austerity and stealth privatisation isn't an accident due to world events like wars but is a political option to make the rich richer and the strategy simply doesn't work and this applies not only to the NHS but also to water, transport, energy and housing. Discuss!!
Spot on Edward. Talk .
Happy to confirm regardless of the outcome of this legal challenge the RCN will start a new ballot in May for an England wide strike action. This won’t be trust by trust but a simple majority of all members working under agenda for change in the NHS. This will include PAH and other local sites. RCN council is recommending vote for strike action. New ballots forms will be sent out Mid May with a 4 week consultation. RCN members deserve better than the current offer. Thank you.
Let's see if RCN put more work into securing a nationwide mandate for strike action than last time? Glad to see RCN Council realised their last mistake of organising a ballot on a Trust by Trust basis, but I suspect the change is solely due to pressure from their members. RCN is a professional body, not a trade union, and still not affiliated to the TUC. The old professional body/craft union mentality has to go.
Do you believe that your nurses are worth more than 5%. That the simple question….