NHS IT, Records and Data

02.04.19

Private contractor staff at Liverpool Women’s Hospital win pay battle after strike action

Staff employed at Liverpool Women’s Hospital who were being payed under the NHS minimum wage have won a pay battle following three sets of strike action.

Security guards, caterers, cleaners, and porters working at the hospital under a private contractor OCS are to be paid more than £1 extra an hour after the staff went on strike three separate times in February and March.

The union Unison said employees were being paid the national minimum wage of £7.783 per hour instead of the £8.93 NHS minimum as OCS had “refused to pay them the same rate for the job as staff employed directly by the NHS.”

NHS employees saw their wages increase last year as part of a pay rise, and now the private contractor and Liverpool Women’s NHS FT have agreed to jointly fund the extra pay, which will see full-time staff earn an extra £2,000 a year.

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The staff will also get the same payments as their colleagues for working overtime and weekends, and Maria Moss, Unison’s north west regional organiser, said “justice had been done at last.”

“All hospital workers are part of the NHS team and they should all be recognised for the important work they do.

“It is unfortunate that our members had to resort to strike action to get treated fairly, but the support from hospital colleagues and the public has helped staff to stick with it to the end.”

Over 40 staff employed by OCS walked out in February, and a further day of strike action due on 1 April was called off as a deal neared completion.

Moss added: “We hope that other privateers working in the NHS sit up and take note of what has happened at the Women’s Hospital.

“Private contractors will be challenged where they are taking profits out of the NHS by underpaying hospital workers.”

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