In the latest intervention in a Unite dispute against NHS outsourcing, Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham today (July 4) responded to Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust’s decision to transfer staff into WWL Solutions.
“I am disappointed that the Trust has decided to press ahead with the creation of WWL Solutions Ltd in the face of such strong opposition from staff,” he said.
“Although the Trust was able to make a number of guarantees around pay, terms and conditions, and pensions, it is clear that staff want to remain directly employed by the NHS both now and in the longer-term,” Burnham added.
“Staff are proud to work for the NHS. Indeed, many of them do the jobs they do, working long hours and regularly going the extra mile, precisely because they work for the NHS.
“I fully appreciate the financial pressure that Trusts like WWL are under. But, since this proposal was first put forward, the Government has indicated that a new financial settlement for the NHS will soon be brought forward.
“I would therefore urge the Trust, even at this late stage, to put this proposal on hold and review it in the light of the changed financial context. I have discussed this with Peter Smith, Chair of the Greater Manchester Health & Social Care Partnership, and we both ask the Trust to consider the impact this is having on local patients and to re-engage in talks with staff to find a solution.”