York Green Party

Green oppose NHS union-busting

23 August 2013

The Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS) is attempting to achieve a £46 million cut in its budget, whilst experiencing soaring levels of staff sickness. Earlier this year, the YAS de-recognised unions Unite and the GMB - who were opposed to the cutbacks. The Trust has also de-recognised the Royal College of Nursing.

York's Andy D'Agorne, Green Party Councillor for Fishergate, said, "These vital staff do a fantastic job and deserve all our support. The government has wrong priorities for spending, protecting funding for nuclear weapons systems while slashing ambulance service budgets. De-recognising unions will do nothing to help the situation and should be condemned by all working people."

Staff sickness levels at the YAS averaged almost three weeks off sick per employee 2012/13 - the worst for any health trust in the region and 50% above the NHS average. Unite say that staff are overworked and many feel bullied, as services chiefs push through the cutbacks in the face of private providers like Arriva threatening to take contracts away from NHS providers. The union has been holding events across the region highlighting the dangers of playing 'russian roulette' with patient safety by making cuts in experienced staff.

If you would like to support ambulance worker's rights to participate in a union you can sign Unite's petition on their website.

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