Striking South Yorkshire NHS staff win pay rise from private firm Sodexo

Image provided by Unison.Image provided by Unison.
Image provided by Unison.
Hospital catering workers have won a pay rise after taking strike action at an NHS trust.

Staff at Doncaster and Bassetlaw hospitals took industrial action after Sodexo, the private firm which employs them, did not match a wage increase given to other NHS staff.

The GMB union said Sodexo has now agreed to give the pay increase in full and backdate it to last April.

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Workers had been on strike since May 1 before a joint agreement was reached with the GMB and Unison at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

GMB regional organiser Stacey Booth said: "Sodexo underestimated the strength of feeling amongst their workers.

“Members were adamant until they received a promise the company would pay up the action would continue.

“Today, their persistence has paid off and we are pleased to announce that Sodexo have agreed in conjunction with the trust to pay the award in full and backdated.

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“We hope that the relationship with Sodexo will be much more constructive going forward.”

Around 70 staff, predominantly women, were transferred from the trust to the private company in January 2017, Unison said.

Unison regional organiser Sue Cookman said: "We need to agree some finer details with Sodexo, but I am delighted that an agreement has been reached.

"This is down to the sheer determination of these workers and shows what can be achieved when they stand together to fight for what they are owed."

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A Sodexo spokesperson said: “The new pay rates are effective from April 1, 2018, and will be implemented by the end of June 2019, along with a one-off payment for the backdated pay difference since April 1, 2018.

"We would like to thank our team for their continued hard work in ensuring the standard of care for patients is maintained.”