Lewisham Primary Care Trust denies forcing nurses to take Easter break

Lewisham Primary Care Trust has hit back at claims by the GMB union of a possible shortfall in nursing cover over the Easter break.

The union’s sister organisation, the Community & District Nursing Association (CDNA), said its member nurses were being forced to take a holiday over Easter by the trust’s HR team – leaving a potential shortfall in nursing cover.

Paul Maloney, GMB senior organiser, said: “The lack of concern shown by the trust’s HR team in putting its own agenda before the care of the community is staggering. Our members who work for the trust are shocked at being forced to take holidays while they should be at work caring for the community.”

Jocelyn Fisher, director of HR at Lewisham Primary Care Trust, said: “Nursing care will not be compromised in any way over the Easter break. No member of staff has been ‘forced’ to take annual leave.

“The CDNA may be misunderstanding how bank holiday leave operates for part-time workers. The nationally agreed annual leave entitlement is added to the bank holiday leave entitlement and, therefore, where staff do not work on a bank holiday this is counted as leave from this aggregated entitlement.”

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