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Unite the Union Industrial Action - 3 February 2014

03 February 2014

David Whiting, Chief Executive at Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, said: “On 1 February 2014 94 individuals who were rostered to be on duty took part in the industrial action over the 24-hour period (this equated to less than 2% of our total workforce). Our plans to maintain high standards of patient care and minimise any impact of the strike were effective.

“As we prepare for the second period of industrial action, we would like to reassure members of the public that our contingency plans continue to focus on maintaining operational cover and sustaining effective and safe services for patients calling upon us for emergency medical assistance. As always, we are committed to providing a safe, responsive and high-quality emergency service which always remains the Trust’s top priority.

“We would like to remind members of the public to use our services wisely and ask that people only call 999 for an ambulance when someone has a life-threatening or serious illness or injury. Anyone requiring advice or treatment for a non-emergency situation or minor ailment considers options such as self-care, a visit to a local pharmacist, GP surgery or walk-in centre.

“Industrial action in this form is certainly not in the best interests of patients. It is deeply concerning for a trade union representing ambulance service workers to strike without making any concessions to patient safety.”

The Trust continues to strongly refute the misleading and factually incorrect claims being made by Unite the Union around patient safety and the terms and conditions of the new rotas.


Notes to Editor: 
1. Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust has formally advised Unite the Union that, with effect from 4 February 2013, it has decided to cease to voluntarily recognise Unite the Union for the purposes of collective bargaining, ie negotiations on behalf of their members. 
2. The Trust remains committed to working in partnership with UNISON, which is not affected by the decision to derecognise Unite the Union, and to the principles of effective consultation and negotiation.  
3. Recognition of Unite the Union has been on a voluntary basis, not a statutory one.  Consequently the Trust is able to determine to no longer recognise Unite the Union on a voluntary basis.
4. Senior management representatives at the Trust continue to have open dialogue with ACAS.
5. The Trust is wholly committed to engaging with and involving its staff in matters that affect them and our patients.
6. UNISON is the largest trade union within the Trust and represents the majority of our employees. It is Britain and Europe's largest public sector union

Produced By: Corporate Communications Department