by Tim Lezard Radiographers working in the NHS have voted to go on strike for the first time in 30 years. SoR members will walk out for four hours on October 20th because of the pay freeze imposed by the government. They will work-to-rule for the remai …

Tim Lezard Europe, UK, UK unions,

Society of Radiographers SoRby Tim Lezard Radiographers working in the NHS have voted to go on strike for the first time in 30 years.

SoR members will walk out for four hours on October 20th because of the pay freeze imposed by the government. They will work-to-rule for the remainder of that week. Emergency care will continue to be provided but pre-booked appointments and procedures may be affected

Richard Evans, the Society’s chief executive officer, said: “Radiographers who work in the NHS in the four countries of the UK will participate. There is the possibility of more action by radiographers in the future. The anger that they and other health professionals feel is very strong.”

The action is being taken by members of the Society and many other NHS trade unions because of an ongoing pay freeze. The government rejected a recommended 1% pay rise for the current year and Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary for England, has said that there will be no increase in 2015. The pay freeze will have been imposed for four out of five years.

NHS workers who are members of GMB, RCM, UNISON and Unite are taking strike action on Monday, and civil servant members of PCS are striking next Wednesday, ahead of the national TUC pay demo in London on October 18th.

Richard Evans said: “Radiographers will try and keep the effect on patients to a minimum but radiographers and other healthcare workers have got to the stage that they feel there is no alternative.

“Because of inflation, staff in the NHS have been taking a year-on-year pay cut. Unless we show the government that we are serious about our claim that NHS staff should be treated fairly, they will continue to take advantage of our goodwill.

“There is a shortage of radiographers, which already has an effect on the timely delivery of diagnostic examinations and the treatment of cancer, which has direct negative consequences on patients.

“Without reasonable and proper recognition of the work that they do, it is increasingly likely that qualified professionals will leave radiography and it will become even more difficult to recruit the additional people which are needed.”


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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