Hundreds of midwives, nurses and other NHS workers called on NHS Trusts throughout the Westcountry to withdraw from a pay ‘cartel’ as they marched in the streets.
Union members and NHS and public service supporters oppose the South West NHS Pay, Terms and Conditions Consortium, composed of 19 NHS Trusts, which could cut wages and change conditions for health workers.
The consortium says in cash-strapped times a ‘one size fits all’ agreement is no longer the best option, and that the changes would save jobs. The South West grouping includes organisations running hospitals in Plymouth, Exeter and Truro. Twenty trusts were signed up but the Bournemouth and Christchurch NHS Foundation Trust withdrew.
The protesters marched to a rally at Castle Park in Bristol on Saturday.
A union spokesman, for the joint unions Unison, Unite and GMB said: “This is crunch time for the rest of the 19 remaining Trust Boards. We expect them to do the right thing and listen to the concerns raised on Saturday by the public of the South West and the speakers who represent NHS work.”