Socialist Worker

Support pharmacy strikers in Scotland

Issue No. 2671

Unite union members are on all-out strike in Tayside

Unite union members are on all-out strike in Tayside (Pic: Unite Scotland/Twitter)


Scottish health workers on all-out strike have appealed for solidarity after talks collapsed last week. 

Pharmacy workers at NHS Tayside walked out over a “flawed job evaluation process” that left some workers on “lower grades than they should be”.

The Unite union members hoped that victory was in sight after bosses set up a local Job Evaluation Panel.

The panel’s final decision, following consistency checking, was due on Wednesday of last week. But the consistency checking did not go ahead.

Unite Scotland said bosses told workers it was because “a staff side member withdrew stating the case was ‘too high profile’ and they did not have ‘sufficient experience’”. 

Susan Robertson, a Unite officer, slammed the move as a “complete and utter farce”.

“How can an NHS board the size of Tayside not fulfil its duties and complete this jointly agreed process?” she asked. 

“It’s clear that NHS Tayside did not intend to deliver on the job evaluation panel’s findings. From day one NHS Tayside has tried to wriggle out of their commitment to an independent process.

“We have now requested a meeting with the Scottish health secretary Jeane Freeman as we believe that she is not fully aware of NHS Tayside’s outrageous and unprofessional behaviour.”

As workers enter their fourth week of action, every trade unionist should build support for their fight.


Health workers across the North West of England plan four more days of action next week. Unison union members at Blackpool Victoria hospital are set to begin a three-day walkout on Thursday of next week.

Workers at the Whiston hospital are then set to begin their own three-day strike the following day.

The workers want outsourcers Compass and Medirest to give them the same rates of pay as workers employed directly by the NHS.


Workers at the Addaction rehabilitation service in Wigan were set to begin a two-day walkout on Wednesday this week. 

The Unison union members, who work on a contract from the council, used to be employed by the NHS.

They are demanding the pay increase that was awarded to directly-employed workers under NHS Agenda for Change pay and terms and conditions.


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