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Hospital staff sign pay and terms petition
A PETITION against possible changes to terms and conditions for NHS staff has been presented to the chief executive of Salisbury District Hospital, Peter Hill.
More than 1,550 members of hospital staff signed the petition opposing the trust’s involvement in the controversial South West Pay, Terms and Conditions Consortium.
And next Monday healthcare unions are planning a protest outside the trust’s annual meeting, being held at Salisbury Arts Centre.
The unions want the hospital’s trust board to pull out of the consortium, which they fear could lead to pay cuts, reduced annual leave, reductions in working hours and income, and changes to antisocial hours payments and sick pay.
Although the Consortium says no decisions have been made, they have come up with a list of 28 of options that could cut the wages bill.
The hospitals say they currently spend about 70 per cent of their budget on staff costs and need to look at ways of reducing this so they can meet tough financial challenges while safeguarding patient care.
But the unions say they need to take action now to ensure that hospital staff don’t lose out, and claim the aim behind the Consortium is “breaking national pay bargaining and imposing deeper pay cuts on staff in Salisbury and the south west”.
Mark Wareham of Unison said: “The fact that 1,550 members of hospital staff signed this petition shows the strength of feeling and level of concern.
“I know they say no decisions have been made but why, then, is Salisbury still part of this?
“We will keep up the pressure and await the board meeting in October or November when we might learn more about the detailed proposals.”
Protests against the pay consortium have already taken place in other south west cities and Salisbury’s unions are combining to make their voices heard by lobbying the trust’s annual meeting.
A hospital spokesman declined to comment, saying there was nothing further the trust could say at this time.