Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Doncaster and Bassetlaw NHS catering staff to strike in pay row

Doncaster Royal Infirmary Image copyright Google
Image caption Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust runs four hospitals, including Doncaster Royal Infirmary

Catering staff at an NHS trust are to stage a series of walkouts in May in a dispute over pay.

Unison said its workers at Doncaster and Bassetlaw NHS Foundation Trust were not receiving a nationally agreed pay rise for NHS staff.

Their jobs were transferred to private company Sodexo in January 2017 and the company is refusing to pay them more.

The firm said extra funding for NHS staff had not be extended to include workers for private contractors.

A Unison spokesperson said: "Unison has been told that Doncaster and Bassetlaw governors were assured that catering workers would be receiving NHS pay when they took the decision to privatise the service.

"Those assurances seem empty now."

Strikes are due to take place between 1-3, 7-9, 15-17 and 20-22 May.

A spokesperson for Sodexo said: "As part of the 2018 Agenda for Change pay deal, the Department of Health agreed to centrally fund new pay rates for NHS employees in England.

"However, this funding has not been extended to include those employed by private contractors, such as Sodexo."

The firm said it "supported Unison's position in lobbying the government for central funding and, if successful, we guarantee to pass that funding on to our employees".

In the meantime, it said it was putting contingency plans in place to minimise disruption of services to patients.

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