Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland Ambulance Service workers to join Translink in election eve 24-hour strike

By Claire Williamson

Northern Ireland Ambulance Service workers are to join Translink workers in a twenty-four hour strike in May, Unite union has confirmed.

Bus and train workers are to strike for 24 hours on May 6 - the day before the General Election.

All Ulsterbus, Metro and NI Rail services will be affected by the protest against cuts to public transport.

Unite regional secretary Jimmy Kelly said the elderly and infirm who depend upon buses and trains would be hurt by reductions to services by provider Translink.

On Thursday Unite National Officer with responsibility for health, Kevin McAdam confirmed that his union had agreed a programme of strike action in pursuit of "an outstanding pay claim for 2014-15, the lack of an offer for the current year and proposed health service closures".

Other Unite workers across the service will commence a "refusal to work unpaid overtime" from April 30 to May 10.

He said: “Healthcare workers are outraged at the failure of the DHSSPS to respond to the need for a fair and equitable pay rise. The 2014/2015 imposition of a non-consolidated pay rise has alarmed staff.

"Furthermore, the absence of any offer for 2015/2016 has caused anxiety for already under-pressure staff. Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK not to have received an offer of a pay rise.

“Unite ambulance service members will join Translink workers on 6 May for a twenty-four hour stoppage from midnight. Other Unite workers across the service will commence a refusal to work unpaid overtime from April 30 to May 10.

“This action is the next stage in our long running pay campaign. We are now joining other health unions in a strategy of varied actions designed to maximise disruption to the management of services while minimising impact on clients.

“This fight is about protecting jobs and services and we will do what it takes to get the Stormont Mandarins to start treating the staff in health with respect and dignity.

He added: "Our members are the lynch-pin of the National Health Service and are being treated abysmally when it comes to pay. The other three nations have already reached settlements”

Further reading:

NHS workers join midwives to strike Translink staff are set to strike over cuts to services £1.1bn spent on public transport yet commuters still wedded to their cars in Northern Ireland Strike will antagonise the public Translink bus and train staff to stage 24 hour strike on election eve in Northern Ireland

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