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Dewsbury hospital workers in protest over cuts

FIGHTING BACK: Outpatient service co-ordinator Julie Hewson on the picket line at Dewsbury and District Hospital. (d415c244)

FIGHTING BACK: Outpatient service co-ordinator Julie Hewson on the picket line at Dewsbury and District Hospital. (d415c244)

HUNDREDS of hospital workers walked out this week in protest over job and pay cuts.

Julie Hewson has worked for the trust which runs Dewsbury and District Hospital for almost 25 years, but said if the cuts came in she would be forced to quit.

“I’ve worked for the Trust since I was 19. I’ve done 24 years service this month and I feel like it doesn’t mean anything.

“I’ve got a possible pay cut of about £2,700. It doesn’t leave me anything to live on,” said Miss Hewson, who was on a Unison picket line with around 70 colleagues yesterday.

The debt-ridden Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust has to save £24m by April.

It wants to axe 70 clerical roles at its hospitals in Dewsbury, Wakefield and Pontefract, and cut the pay of 275 staff by lowering their job grades.

HR director Graham Briggs said: “Our absolute priority is to provide safe, high quality care for our patients, which is sustainable for the longer term.

“To do this we must have a workforce that is financially sustainable but which is also designed to best meet our service needs.”

He said the Trust had made sure nobody who wanted to stay was made redundant and it was open to further talks.

See today’s Reporter for more on the dispute.

 

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