Hospital Security Deserve Pay Security!
Why did we plan to strike?
It shouldn’t be too much to ask that hospital workers get the agreed NHS rates of pay.
But here on site at Blackburn and Burnley Hospitals, there was a hidden workforce earning well below Agenda for Change rates of pay and on lower terms and conditions than other Trust staff.
As Engie security guards we put ourselves in danger every day and work tirelessly to keep staff, patients and the public safe. During the pandemic, we have been on the front-line of the fight to keep our communities safe, whilst putting ourselves at significant personal risk. ONS figures show that male security guards have the highest risk of dying as a result of COVID-19 compared with other demographics.
In spite of the vital job we do protecting patients and staff, we earned well below the NHS rates. Some of us were on the minimum wage. This was plainly unfair!
We sought to resolve this for some time, but initially to no avail. In the absence of progress, we opened a UNISON ballot of Engie security staff at Blackburn and Burnley Hospitals over whether to take strike action and fight for fair pay for all.
We called on Engie to pay us all the full NHS Agenda for Change rate for the job without changing our shift patterns in order to cut our pay.
What action did we have planned?
We planned 48 hours of strike action in April 2021 in order to secure fair pay.
What was the outcome?
East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust brought the whole security service in-house meaning that we will transfer to health service employment and will be entitled to full NHS Agenda for Change pay and conditions.