North Devon hospital workers vote for strike action

Low-paid contract staff at North Devon District Hospital in Barnstaple have voted in favour of industrial action.

Public sector trade union Unison is at loggerheads with Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust (NDHT) over improvements demanded on behalf of 300 workers, including cleaners, porters and cooks, employed by Sodexo.

Unison failed to disclose how many members took part in the ballot, but said that 97% of those who did voted in favour of industrial action.

Helen Eccles, the union’s regional organiser, said: “We have been forced to take this step by the failure of the trust and Sodexo to implement a national agreement, which should have been applied in October 2006.”

According to the North Devon Journal, NDHT deputy chief executive Jo Gibbs said the trust was determined to avoid industrial action.

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