Tuesday, 13 March 2012

UNISON Health workers in Scotland reject Government attacks on their pensions and start a new wave of strikes

The first strike will take place today at the central decontamination unit of Ayrshire Central Hospital in Irvine. Picket lines are in force this morning and the strike will last for 48 hours.

Further selective coordinated strike action will take place on a regular rolling basis across Scotland and will target particular departments in each Health Board. Strike action is planned later this month in NHS Lothian, NHS Lanarkshire and NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde.

The strikes are intended to increase pressure on the Scottish Government for a Scottish solution to all aspects of the pensions changes. This includes this year’s increase to employee contributions of up to 2.4% - which is effectively a pensions tax on health workers.
Members are particularly angry because not one penny of the ‘pensions tax’ increase in contributions will go towards their pensions.

Mike Kirby, UNISON Scotland Secretary, said: “We do not accept that the Scottish Government has no option other than to follow the UK Government’s proposals. There is a separate scheme in Scotland and there are other options to fund the cost. These should be pursued in partnership.”
"We call on the Scottish Government to seek a Scottish solution, delay the pensions tax, and engage with us to find a negotiated settlement.”

You are encouraged to sign the following e-petitions which are on the HM Government website:

Public & Private Pension Increases - change from RPI to CPI : http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/1535

Maintaining a Fair and Sustainable NHS Pension Scheme:
More than 100,000 signatures may trigger a debate in the Westminster Parliament.