They made their voices heard, against plans to reduce NHS pensions, in the CSP ballot result that was announced on 14 November.
‘Members will be reassured that the decision to proceed to strike action has such a strong mandate,’ said CSP Council vice-chair Sue Rees.
There was a combined 66 per cent turnout for the two ballots – one in England and Wales, the other in Scotland.
‘That is a higher percentage than the turnout for any MP in last year’s general election, according to the TUC,’ said Peter Finch, assistant director of CSP employment relations and union services (ERUS).
The ballots covered members working in the NHS and associated social enterprise companies. Results from the two ballots combined show that 86 per cent of those voting were in favour of industrial action.
‘We are exceedingly proud of both the Yes figure and the turnout,’ said ERUS director Lesley Mercer.
‘This result demonstrates how strongly CSP members feel about this issue,’ said Alex MacKenzie, chair of the society’s industrial relations committee (IRC).
‘Two thirds of the members is a fantastic result, absolutely brilliant. This is a real boost to our attempts to persuade the government to change its proposals for the NHS pension scheme.’
The IRC is calling on every CSP member in workplaces where strike action is going ahead to take part in the action.
All 276 employer organisations have been given the ballot results by the CSP. As Frontline went to press, the society was due to give employers confirmation of the strike action.
The CSP will use the result of the ballot to seek further changes to government proposals, in negotiations taking place over the next couple of weeks.
Meanwhile, the CSP is arranging to ballot members in Northern Ireland and those in three trusts in England, who were not included in the current ballot.
If they vote Yes, they will have the right to participate in some separate industrial action (decided by the IRC) and to join in with any further UK days of industrial action if necessary in the new year.
England and Wales
- Yes: 11,123 (86% of valid votes)
- No: 1,808 (14% of valid votes)
- Spoilt: 19 papers
- Total number of ballot papers counted: 12,931
- Yes :1,618 (89.1% of valid votes)
- No: 198 (10.9% of valid votes)
- Spoilt: 1 paper
- Total number of ballot papers counted: 1,816