Following two days of strike action at the beginning of May, catering staff employed by contractors Sodexo at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have been offered a pay deal matching the increases for NHS staff agreed to in 2018. The action was jointly coordinated by UNISON and the GMB.

70 NHS catering staff members were had been transferred to Sodexo when the trust privatised the service in January 2017. UNISON now argues that this has cost each individual around £1,000 per year, because their pay did not automatically follow national NHS pay scales.

The strike action at Doncaster Royal Infirmary and Bassetlaw Hospital has been part of a series of similar recent actions taken by trade unions against a variety of private contractors that have refused to keep staff on equivalent pay to NHS national rates.

Last month support staff at Liverpool Women’s Hospital also won an agreement from contractors OCS to increase pay to NHS levels, in a settlement worth as much as £2,000 to some staff.

John Lister

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