Ambulance strike action back on

PUBLISHED: 16:10 27 January 2011

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Archant

AMBULANCE workers in North Somerset have rescheduled a protest against new shift patterns for this Wednesday.

Union members at Great Western Ambulance Service (GWAS) were set to begin working to rule today (Thurs) until a legal challenge meant it was postponed late on Wednesday.

The union has announced that the strike action will now take place six days later, unless there is a breakthrough in talks with service bosses.

Members are unhappy about a change of shifts, which they say would mean workers could face pay cuts.

Earlier this month a ballot found in favour of industrial action and althougg GWAS put forward several packages, Unison said it was not enough.

Regional organiser Simon Newell said: “The trust management’s refusal to negotiate seriously and to waste public money on hiring lawyers rather than sit down with us to resolve this dispute is indicative of their apparent contempt for meaningful negotiations.”

GWAS chief executive David Whiting said: “We remain committed to avoiding the need for industrial action as that will do nothing to benefit the many hundreds of patients we attend every day.

“To that end, we will go into Monday’s further meeting with UNISON with every intention of finding a solution to this dispute.”

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