Outsourced security guards at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) in central London will strike from 6-9 December, demanding parity with directly-employed NHS workers’ pay and conditions.
The strike follows the successful struggle of outsourced cleaners at GOSH to win in-house employment and NHS contracts. Following the cleaners’ victory, security guards voted unanimously for industrial action.
Security guard Samuel Awittor said: “We are going on strike because we feel that we have not been treated fairly and we’ve been discriminated against. GOSH is made up of departments of families. If you take security out, it’s not going to be complete. If you take a clinical department out, it’s not going to be complete. And in a family circle, even when one member of the family feels he’s been left behind, or he’s not been treated fairly, there’s always going to be a reaction. We ask ourselves, are we less human than others? We begin to question why there is this two-tier system where others get different benefits, when we do the same or more”.
The workers’ union, United Voices of the World, will hold a rally in support of the strike at GOSH at 12:30 on Tuesday 7 December. A union statement said: “Most of the workers are from Black, Brown and migrant backgrounds. Denying them equality and full rights is nothing short of racial discrimination. During the pandemic security guards have gone above and beyond to take care of the patients.”
• Rally to support the workers: Tuesday 7 December, 12.30: more details here