Unite Yorkshire ambulance workers balloted on strike

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Ambulance staff in Yorkshire are being balloted for strike action over new shift patterns.

Unite said the changes could see paramedics going more than 10 hours without a meal break and would lead to an "overtired workforce".

Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust said rota changes were agreed after consulting with staff and the Unison.

The trust derecognised Unite last year citing a "difficult and disappointing" working relationship.

'Safety concerns'

Unite claims the longer shifts will "impact on patient safety" and has called for a protected meal break of 30 minutes after six hours.

It said it was balloting 450 of its members in a vote which would close on 24 January.

But ambulance service managers claim the new rotas would improve the allocation of rest breaks and reduce shift over-runs.

Last February, the trust said it had decided to cease to voluntarily recognise Unite for the purposes of collective bargaining.

It has continued to meet with representatives of Unison.

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