Health Trusts left in impossible position by political inaction on pay and transformation, says Alliance Health representatives ahead of strike action.

Alliance Party Health spokespeople have warned that Health and Social Care Trusts are being left in an impossible position by ongoing political inaction, after Chief Executives put out a joint statement on Thursday's strike action.

Health Danny Donnelly Paula Bradshaw

South Belfast MLA Paula Bradshaw has said: "Everyone is now well aware that ongoing political inaction, both in terms of restoring the Assembly and engaging in meaningful transformation of the healthcare system, is leaving Trusts in an almost impossible position with regard to service delivery.


"The challenges confronting us require the legislative intervention, Executive leadership and proper democratic scrutiny which is impossible without functioning devolution and without all parties recognising the need for change. This strike is a reminder not only about how staff feel undervalued, but also that we need Ministers in place who understand fully the need for urgent action on reform, not least of pay and conditions for workers."


East Antrim MLA Danny Donnelly, who is also a nurse, added: "On Thursday I will be standing alongside colleagues in the Health and Social Care sector demanding our entitlement to fair pay and conditions. However, I have no doubt that each and every one of us will be well aware of the challenges faced by Trusts who are trying to deliver services in a context of low morale and severe difficulties with recruitment and retention.


"We need an Assembly, not just to provide a minister responsible for delivering fair pay and conditions, but which recognises the opportunity to match the type of safe staffing legislation we have seen in neighbouring jurisdictions. Such legislation will not just ensure that we never again face industrial action due to low pay, but also that conditions and ultimately patient safety are improved across the sector.


"Fundamentally, if we do not improve pay and conditions and boost morale across Health and Social Care, we will not be able to ensure that people receive the safe and quality care they need when they need it. It is essential we ensure that pay awards are made on time, that staff are properly valued, and most of all that patients receive the care they need and deserve from the service."