Scottish NHS workers in the GMB union have rejected the 4% Scottish government pay offer. The RCN, who also recommended rejection, are expected to announce their result as Solidarity goes to press on 11 May. Unison recommended acceptance of the offer, and Unite did not make a recommendation, so it seems likely their members will vote to accept. The issue in Scotland will now be whether GMB and possibly the RCN will ballot for action, or simply use the recommendation to reject as a crude recruitment ploy, as happened in the last pay round.
Members should push for a ballot for strike action, particularly if RCN members also reject. A campaign involving these unions could be effective and allow members of other unions to organise alongside them. An ongoing industrial action campaign in Scotland over 4% will have obvious knock on effect in England and Wales, where the offer, expected in June, is likely to be significantly lower. Across the unions its clear that cross-union rank-and-file organisations are key to building democratic campaigns to push union leaderships to deliver and to build for action in workplaces.
• Workers’ Liberty healthworkers’ fraction are holding an online public meeting at 6pm on Wednesday 19 May, “Organising to Strike for NHS Pay”, on Zoom