Unions fear over NHS pay

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NORTH East union leaders say they will fight plans to bring in regional NHS pay.

Health trusts across the North East have been told the issue could end up in the courts if bosses put jobs at risk.

The warning comes after a group of trusts in the South West said it was considering the introduction of reforms.

Unison has said 20 trusts have formed a consortium to fix the pay and conditions of health workers and were thinking about cutting pay and holiday entitlement.

Glenn Turp, the Royal College of Nursing’s northern region director, said: “Our regional board is following developments in the South West very closely indeed.

“All NHS employers across the North East need to be on notice that preliminary indications are that out members are of the mind-set that if something similar were attempted in our region, they would inevitable demand a very robust response.

“Equally, if any attempt is made to impose inferior terms and conditions using a process of mass dismissals, our regional board would call on our legal team to pursue the matter though the courts if necessary. Locally, we would also expect that the health trade unions would jointly also look at a range of halting the process.”

A Health Department spokesman said the NHS already has the freedom to determine pay terms and conditions, but most employers prefer national pay frameworks.