Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin has called on Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to reject “backdoor privatisation” plans that could lead to a two-tier workforce at Dewsbury and Pinderfields Hospitals.
Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust, which runs Dewsbury and District, Pinderfields and Pontefract hospitals, have agreed plans to transfer the contracts of around 900 staff members to a ‘wholly owned subsidiary company’.
Cleaners, IT specialists and maintenance workers are among those who could be affected by the plans to transfer estates and facilities services to a separate company owned by the trust – but would no longer be NHS employees.
Unison have called the move an “insult” to workers and will be balloting their members next month over potential strike action.
The trust now need the agreement of Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to move forward with the plans.
Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin said: “These plans could leave 900 staff working at the three hospitals no longer employed by the NHS and they will be at risk of a future where the terms and conditions of their employment are inferior to that of their colleagues.
“This is why I am calling on Jeremy Hunt to reject the plans, and I will ensure he, along with NHS bosses, know they have a fight on their hands.
“Hardworking NHS staff need a pay rise after years of frozen wages, but this move could see a private company take over who are not bound by the same national agreements.
“This would lead to a two-tier workforce where colleagues working side by side, doing the same hours in the same job, could take home a different wage each month.
“Now it’s time for Mid Yorkshire Trust and Jeremy Hunt to do the right thing by the NHS and staff by rejecting this deal and bringing forward a fairer funding agreement for our local NHS services.”