Unison suspends NHS strike after new offer

Guy Bentley
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Thurday's strike has been called off (Source: Getty)

The Unison union has called off plans NHS workers to walk out on 29 January.

After bitter disputes over pay with Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, the union said a new offer from the Department of Health would be put to its members.

Unison was joined in its to suspend strike action by Unite, GMB and the Royal College of Midwives. Last year, the government decided against implementing a recommended one per cent pay increase.

As well as the industrial action planned for Thursday Unison was also preparing a four-week work to rule.

Unison head of health and the unions' lead negotiator, Christina McAnea said:

The two strike days staged by health workers last year have moved the government to negotiate with the unions.

This isn't a great offer but it addresses some of the key concerns unions have about low pay in the NHS. In the interest of patients' safety unions will now consult members.

It will be up to members to decide whether to accept or reject the proposals. If they choose to reject them we will move to further industrial action.

The Conservative Party has said it will impose stricter rules on public sector strikers if voted in at this year's general election. Under the new rules, which will feature in the party's manifesto for May, 40 per cent of all eligible union members would have to be in favour for a strike to go ahead.

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