Ballot results on NHS pay in Scotland are due in the next few days as we go press. Unison has recommended the 4% offer to its members; RCN and GMB are advising rejection. There has been minimal campaigning during the ballot and so the turnout is likely to be low. Whichever way the vote goes, work will be needed to involve members and raise the activity levels in workplaces.
In England and Wales activity on pay in health has gone into a lull as the drawn out Pay Review Board process continues. The Pay Review Board is now expected to report in mid to late June, rather than May as previously predicted (for a pay settlement date in April). In the meantime, it’s vital we continue to raise the issue of pay in our workplaces, build union density, and convince members that strike action is possible and can win. Making the link between workload, stress, privatisation and pay will be key in some areas. Workers’ Liberty has also raised the tactical issues of disaggregated ballots and preparation for cross-union action to challenge legal restrictions on strikes. The focus should be on developing cross-union rank and file networks at this stage.
NHS Workers Say No and Health Campaigns Together have called for city-wide demonstrations to mark the NHS anniversary on 3 July. That is likely to be the next co-ordinated focus.