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50,000 health workers in Scotland vote on call for strike action over pay

MORE than 50,000 health workers in Scotland are voting on a call for strike action in a dispute over NHS staff pay.

Unison is balloting members after a 5 per cent increase offered by Scottish Health Secretary Humza Yousaf was rejected.

The union said it was the first time since devolution took effect that health workers have been balloted for strike action over pay.

Unison Scotland’s health committee noted that the offer would mean a “real-terms pay cut” and is recommending that members vote to strike.

Chairwoman Wilma Brown said: “These are unprecedented times and NHS staff are struggling to make ends meet.

“The Scottish government’s pay offer is nowhere near enough and leaves everyone in the NHS worse off. 

"It’s a real-terms pay cut across every single NHS salary band.

“We’re in the biggest cost-of-living and NHS staffing crisis in history and yet the Scottish government want hard-working health workers to accept a real-terms pay cut.”

The ballot opened on Monday and runs until October 31.

Mr Yousaf said: “Any ballot for industrial action is disappointing.

“We are engaged with health unions and I hope we can come to an agreement on pay in the near future.”

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