Domestic team industrial action
In light of the current activity and comments shared and published publically around a market testing exercise of our domestic services and concerns about the plans for the future, please see our statement below for background information and clarity about the situation:
'Anyone living and working locally or visiting the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow recently may be aware that Unison, the trade union, has sent notification of their intention to initiate six days of strike action in June by members of our domestic team; the first day of this action is planned for 6 June..
This total number of days of strike action is unprecedented particularly as the action is against outsourcing, which is a decision that has not been made and that has clearly been only an option not a definite and final choice.
The market testing of our domestic services is part of a modernisation programme for all of the non-clinical and support services at PAHT to ensure that our domestic services are able to meet the demands of a busy hospital; meet national cleaning standards consistently provide good value for money for the taxpayer.
The market testing exercise is not a decision to outsource our domestic services.
Our domestic colleagues are a valued and valuable part of the PAHT team. Their roles are an essential part of ensuring our hospital is clean, safe, welcoming and ready for our patients, visitors and staff.
An external review is now taking place of the information we have received from the market testing exercise, which will be followed by an internal review. Members of our domestic team will be part of the internal evaluation ahead of a decision being made in August (2019).
Given that a decision has not been made, we are disappointed that UNISON has chosen to encourage our domestic team to take strike action and unclear why they are choosing to take this action now. We can reassure our patients that we have business continuity plans that will cover any period of industrial action.'