Ambulance service strike: Ballot dates announced for potential industrial action amid "worst A&E delays ever"
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GMB Union has announced the dates for the opening and closing of a ballot for ambulance workers to vote on strike action. The union has said the ballot will open to members on October 24 and will remain open until November 29.
The ballot will be open to 115,000 ambulance workers across 11 trusts in England and Wales. Ambulance workers from London, East of England, East and West Midlands, North East, Yorkshire, North West, South Central, South East Coast, South West and Wales Ambulance trusts will take part in the strike vote.
The motion for strike action comes following workers’ anger towards the government’s four per cent pay award, which the union says will leave members facing another significant real terms pay cut.
The ballot date announcement comes just days after the Royal College of Nursing said it will ballot its 30,000 members for strike action over pay for the first time in its 106 year history.
Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer, said: “Ambulance workers have just had enough. “They’ve not been on strike in decades, but they are at the end of what they can take.
“Pay has been systematically slashed for more than ten years and we now face the worst cost of living crush in a generation. Meanwhile vacancies are at record highs and we have the worst A&E delays ever - and it’s not even the winter flu season yet.
“But this is about more than pay and conditions. Cuts and shortages mean GMB members feel they are unable to deliver safe standards of patient care. Things can’t go on like this - something has to give.”
GMB said that if voted for by its members, the strike action could take place before Christmas and would mean that each of the last six months of 2022 would have seen some form of national industrial action take place.