Socialist Worker

NHS

Issue No. 1883

CLEANING AND catering workers at Neath hospital in South Wales staged a one-day strike on 22 December.

The workers, who are in the Unison union, are angry because the private cleaning contractor that employs them, OCS, has refused to increase staffing.

"The 130 Unison members are fed up struggling to keep the hospital clean with insufficient staff, and having to work long hours," said Unison's regional organiser.

The workers called off previously planned action when they were promised an extra 100 hours' staffing would be put in place and a study into low staffing undertaken.

"The employers have failed to put in the agreed extra hours and have intimidated staff to try and prevent industrial action," said a union rep.

In 1986 there were 88,307 cleaners in the NHS according to the Department of Health. Unison estimates that today there are fewer than 30,000 cleaners.


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