NHS GMB members vote in favour of Agenda for Change

NHS
members of the GMB union have voted in favour of Agenda for Change.

The
results of the ballot showed a 5 to 1 majority (86 per cent) in favour of the
agreement.

The
GMB endorsed the deal, which has taken four years to negotiate with the
Government and other health unions, because:


It could provide salary increases of up to and for some more than 40 per cent
for trades in the health service that have historically fallen behind through a
job evaluation exercise, which puts all employees on the same pay structure


It provides training and career development for all NHS staff from cleaners to
consultants – an advantage previously only given to nurses and health
professionals


It will establish a NHS minimum wage of £5.35 an hour


It sets the working week at 37.5 hours and provides enhancements of up to 25
per cent of their salary for individuals required to work unsociable hours – an
advantage previously limited to certain jobs


Annual leave set at a minimum of 28 days plus 8 public holidays for all staff


In addition, in London, staff can earn up to 20 per cent of salary subject to a
minimum payment of £3,000 for living in a high cost area

The
GMB represents a broad spectrum of occupations at all levels in the NHS, from
ancillary staff such as cleaners, caterers and porters, to allied health
professionals such as therapists and ambulance staff through to nurses,
midwives and consultants.

Sharon
Holder, GMB national officer for health, said: "This is wonderful news for
NHS support workers, who are the backbone of the NHS. The agreement gives them
the recognition they deserve and provides them, for the first time, with
training and development needed for career progression within the NHS."

By Quentin Reade

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