UK strikes: Rail chaos month begins with first 48-hour action as nurses walkout looms
The RMT union praised its 40,000 members for launching a 48-hour strike that brought much of the rail network to a standstill.
The 48-hour strike by railway workers was “strongly supported”, causing travel chaos, the union of railway, sea and transport workers said.
Further strikes are scheduled for Friday and Saturday (December 16 and 17), threatening huge disruption to trains during the busy period until Christmas, after RMT members rejected a 9% pay rise offered by NetworkRail.
RMT general secretary Mick Lynch is due to hold another meeting with employers and government on Thursday, although there are few signs of a breakthrough in the bitter line.
Royal Mail staff joined railway workers on a walk out on Wednesday.
As nurses prepare to march on Thursday, the head of NHS employers said there are real concerns about the level of cover nurses will provide to cancer patients in the next 24 hours.
Surgeries postponed for up to six weeks, says NHS trust chief
The head of an NHS trust has said a significant number of scheduled appointments have been delayed or will no longer take place in person during the nurses’ strike.
Professor Tim Orchard, chief executive of the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, has warned that some surgeries would have to be delayed for up to six weeks. He said: ‘Our aim has been to ensure that we continue to provide safe, high-quality care, while ensuring that our nurses and health care workers can exercise their right to take industrial action if they so choose. wish.
“Working closely with the local NCR Strike Committee, our teams have developed detailed contingency plans. Our A&E and inpatient services will be fully operational and we expect to be able to continue our urgent cancer care.
“But we have had to postpone a lot of our other planned care or, where possible, switch to virtual appointments. We anticipate that patients whose appointment or operation has been rescheduled may be rescheduled to the end of January.
“Patients with scheduled appointments should show up as normal, unless they have been contacted by us to reschedule or switch to a virtual appointment. »
Maryam Zakir-HussainDecember 15, 2022 10:39
70,000 appointments and procedures lost due to strikes, according to the Minister of Health
Health Minister Maria Caulfield said around 70,000 appointments, procedures and surgeries would be lost in England due to the strike. Thousands more will be affected in Northern Ireland and Wales.
She told Sky News: ‘Cancer surgeries are going to be closed at these 44 trusts in England. We estimate that approximately 70,000 appointments, procedures, surgeries will be lost.
The health service will operate a holiday-style service in many areas, although the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has said it will continue to staff chemotherapy, cancer emergency services, dialysis , intensive care units, neonatal and pediatric intensive care.
Maryam Zakir-HussainDecember 15, 2022 10:33 am
Government offer to nurses ‘too low’, says senior Tory
Former Conservative President Sir Jake Berry has said the government is “going to have to improve its offer” to nurses to end strikes in the NHS.
“I can tell you the government’s offer is too low,” the Tory MP told Talk TV.
Berry added: “We have to find a way as a government, and the union as well, to get to that central point, that point of agreement, immediately.”
Maryam Zakir-HussainDecember 15, 2022 10:25 am
Is there a strike today?
Although many commuters woke up to the train disruptions in the first place, Thursday is not an official strike day.
The RMT strike dates for December are: 13, 14, 16 and 17 December; and from 6 p.m. on December 24 to 7 a.m. on December 27.
The days and ‘in between’ days after the strikes will be characterized by slow-to-start train services, delays and disruptions which Network Rail says will last until mid-morning.
Other strikes will take place on January 3 and 4 and on January 6 and 7, 2023.
Here’s everything you need to know about strikes around Christmas and New Years.
Lucy ThackrayDecember 15, 2022 10:02
Jane DaltonDecember 15, 2022 07:00
Rail chaos could end on Sunday
Some passengers fear the disruption following the 48-hour rail strike will last at least until Sunday as trains and drivers are in the wrong places.
Jane DaltonDecember 15, 2022 05:05
The Transport Secretary has given northern rail companies the chance to strike a deal
It’s “up to unions to decide” whether they want rail services in the north of England to improve, according to Transport Secretary Mark Harper.
The Cabinet minister claimed he had given TransPennine Express and Northern ‘the reach they needed to deliver a meaningful and generous offer’ on rest day work at the Aslef drivers’ union.
Thousands of services have been canceled across the region at short notice over the past few months.
Much of the disruption was caused by workers no longer volunteering to work paid shifts on their days off, amid an industrial relations crisis in the sector.
In a statement to Parliament, Mr. Harper wrote: “Aslef must enter into negotiations and propose any new agreement to its members and, if accepted, do everything in its power to make this agreement work.
“TransPennine made a generous revised offer to Aslef and it was almost immediately rejected without being presented to the members.
“It’s up to the unions to decide if they want to improve services, for the benefit of passengers and the wider economy in the North.”
Jane DaltonDecember 15, 2022 03:03
Little hope of breakthrough
Further strikes by railway unions are planned in the coming weeks, threatening huge disruption to trains in the busy period until Christmas.
RMT general secretary Mick Lynch is due to hold another meeting with employers and government on Thursday, but there are few signs of a breakthrough in the bitter line.
He said: “If the 16 days of action continues, over £300million will have been spent by the taxpayer to ensure they [train companies] suffer no financial loss.
“The cost of living crisis is accelerating out of control and the labor movement is taking the lead in multiple sectors to protect workers.
“We send our heartfelt solidarity to the nurses and their union, the NCR, for their historic strike tomorrow, as well as to our heroic postal workers who are striking on issues very similar to ours.
Jane DaltonDecember 15, 2022 01:00
The rail strike “solidly supported”
A 48-hour strike by railway workers has been “strongly supported”, causing travel chaos across the country, a union said on Wednesday.
Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union withdrew on Tuesday in a long-running dispute over pay, jobs and conditions.
The union praised its 40,000 members for launching a 48-hour strike that shut down large parts of the railway across the country.
Mick Lynch said: “I congratulate the members of the RMT who have shown immense dignity and unfailing courage throughout this 48-hour strike.
“They have shown how important their work is to the functioning of the economy and society at large.”
Jane DaltonDecember 14, 2022 11:00 p.m.
NHS chiefs fear nursing coverage for cancer patients
Real concerns remain about the level of cover nurses will provide to cancer patients during Thursday’s strike, the head of NHS employers has said.
In a letter to NHS leaders, Danny Mortimer said some aspects of the talks with the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) had been disappointing and warned that “unless the government indicates a willingness to negotiate on issues related wages, further strike dates will be announced by the NCR for January 2023 and beyond.”
The letter, dated Wednesday December 14 and seen by the PA news agency, read: “To be clear, real concerns remain.
“There are areas where we are disappointed that we have not been able to make more progress with the RCN, with the limited national waivers for cancer services being a particular area of concern.”
Jane DaltonDecember 14, 2022 8:52 p.m.