Over recent months UNISON members and staff have worked tirelessly to oppose any plans to be transferred out of the NHS to a Wholly Owned Subsidiary at Tees Esk and Wear Valley Trust. Staff include domestics, housekeepers, porters and maintenance staff who are proud to work for the NHS and didn’t want to be hived off to a private limited company, they wanted to remain as part of the NHS One Team.
By working together we have succeeded in getting the Trust Board to see sense and put a stop to the plans to transfer staff out of the NHS. Again and again, we heard our members concerns that they felt undervalued, upset, angry and clearly worried about their future.
We listened to our members and launched an effective campaign. We attended every staff briefing to support our members, as the Managing Director of TEWV EFM Ltd. gave a message to the staff of their intentions to take proposals to the Trust Board meeting on Tuesday 25th September at West Park Hospital Darlington.
UNISON used both it’s political and industrial strength and gained the support of all the Tees Valley Labour MP’s who wrote to the Trust to support UNISON in opposing the plans. UNISON contacted local Councillors, Health Scrutiny Committee’s and Health and Wellbeing Boards as well as collecting hundreds of signatures on our petition. We organised a consultative ballot to turn our members anger into action.
This is a fantastic victory for us, and for the dedicated NHS staff who have been tangled up in the issue, we could not have done it without the hard work of UNISON activists, UNISON staff and support from the public. I’d like to thank local Labour MPs for their support during this campaign.
This isn’t the end of our camping against wholly owned subsidiaries, we will continue to challenge any trust that tries to outsource their staff.
In November we will be celebrating NHS One Team week to recognise the that the NHS could not function without its support staff, look out for events 5 – 9 November.