Bradford NHS members suspend strike action UNISON to present its case to trust for services to remain in-house

UNISON has agreed to suspend the indefinite industrial action that was due to start on Monday at Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, after successful talks at the conciliation service ACAS.

Some 300 UNISON members were preparing to escalate industrial action if the trust didn’t halt plans to transfer them to a wholly owned private company it is setting up.

Regional organiser Natalie Ratcliffe said: “The trust has agreed not to proceed with a 1 October transfer date. The board of directors will meet on 12 September.

“UNISON has been offered the opportunity to present its case, to allow the board to further reflect on the position previously taken. The outcome of this further consideration will be notified to UNISON by the end of September 2019.”

The staff, who work in estates, facilities and clinical departments, went on strike at Bradford teaching hospitals for two weeks earlier in August, having already taken one week’s action in July.

They want to remain as direct NHS employees, and fear that the trust’s plans to move their work to a wholly owned subsidiary company could see workers losing the protections they have as NHS employees.