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Hospital workers protest against car park charges

Health workers have protested against a 113% increase in parking charges at a city hospital where the car park is run under a private finance initiative (PFI) arrangement.

A permit for a month at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, allowing “14 exits” from the space, has rocketed in price from £42 to £89.50.

Permits allowing more than 14 exits in four weeks have also increased in cost, to £112.50.

Around 940 cheaper permits are available but this does not match the demand from staff, and priority for these is given to consultants.

The multi-storey car park is owned by Impregilo Car Parking and run by Apcoa under contract to NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

Parking fees at hospitals in Scotland were abolished in 2009 but three which are run under PFI still charge people to leave their vehicle.

Staff nurse Sharron Tomalon-Gallacher told the BBC: “GRI nursing staff provide a vital service to the people of Glasgow. It is imperative that they are able to get to work safely on time.

“Nursing shifts often start very early in the morning, meaning that for many public transport is not an option.

“Staff members who are unable to afford the increased costs may be forced to park outside the hospital grounds, potentially compromising their safety.”

A health board spokeswoman said: “Unfortunately as the car park is privately owned, we do not have any control over any tariff increases that Impregilo choose to make.”

Readers' comments (9)

  • This again. Why is the basic notion that STAFF should have FREE arrangements not simple common sense?

    The NHS trust/board may be washing their hands of this one saying that it is not under their control, but don't they have a duty to provide facilities for staff themselves? Or perhaps subsidising private firms? Oh, sorry, that would cost money wouldn't it!

    And on another point, why is priority given to consultants? Nurses are the more essential workforce here.

    Here's an idea to all those staff, just start taking public transport, yes it may get you to work an hour or two late, but then ALL of you just turn round and blame the trust for not providing facilities? I wonder how quickly arrangements will be made then?

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  • Sorry I know the idea is sarcastic and impractical, it just makes me bloody angry!

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  • Spot on.
    Another PFI fiasco NHS Boards agreed for a quick buck.

    Just read what the porkies the Trust Board uttered on 05/08/2005

    "Patients and visitors to one of Glasgow's busiest hospitals will find parking much easier with the opening of a new multi-million pound car park.

    Glasgow Royal Infirmary's new car park opens today (4th August 2005), for patients, staff and visitors.

    The ultra modern, architecturally-designed, building over six levels, addresses these problems with over 1000 spaces, including a total of 40 disabled spaces-20 for staff and 20 public use.

    In total, the number of spaces available to the public and staff rises to over 1400 because of extra car parking areas which have been created on site.

    Staff from Apcoa, the company managing the car park for owners Impregilo Car Parking Glasgow Limited, are on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

    Not only does this provide round the clock monitoring of security cameras, with coverage recorded, but Apcoa employees will also escort staff if requested, to and from the car park to the hospital, particularly at night.

    The top two storeys of the new building have been designated for hospital staff, and around 950 permits have been issued following a comprehensive consultation process involving managers and trades union representatives.

    Amongst the key considerations for allocating permits is whether staff are carers for sick children or relatives and may have to return home quickly in an emergency.

    Other criteria include registered disabled; staff required to move between sites and community based staff.

    Tom Divers, Chief Executive, NHS Greater Glasgow, welcomed the new facility.He said: "Not only does the car park address long standing parking problems experienced by both staff and visitors, but the comprehensive security features which have been incorporated into the design should also reassure everyone who uses the facility."


    Ends.

    Notes for Editors
    1.In calculating the number of permits to be issued and the number of spaces dedicated for staff, shift patterns were taken into account. Therefore a number of staff will have access at different times to the same car parking space.

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  • I am due to start a new job on monday as a staff nurse doing early and late shifts. I live 12 miles from the hospital and have to drive. I was told today that the hospital has just sold off 300 parking spaces. This morning 19 permit holders were turned away from the staff car park as already full. Due to this situation, the trust is not issuing any more permits. There are no areas around the hospital safe to leave my car. I was advised that if desperate, I could park in the visitors pay & display, at a cost of £11+ a day. I find this situation unbelievable and totally unsafe. How could this happen?

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  • Anonymous | 9-Nov-2011 5:00 pm

    "How could this happen?"

    Because, the now-retired and much despised Tom Divers and his posse lied repeatedly to the NHS Staff in Greater Glasgow & Clyde. Staff are not allowed to park without a permit (which are mainly issued to Consultants and Senior Managers, etc) in any Glasgow Hospitals. There is a maximum stay of 4 hours allowed for vistors and patients in the largest parts of car parks (and staff are not allowed to use these parking spaces anyway), so the vast majority of staff have to park outside of the hospitals, increasing risk to our safety and clogging up the residential areas surrounding hospitals. There has been no effort to work any with public tranport companies to help those who travel during unsociable hours.

    However, we had days of action to protest against the charges which were being brought in. Unfortunately, very few staff actually turned out.....despite complaining bitterly amongst themselves. A lesson, if it were needed, that if we sit on our hands and do nothing, then the 'powers-that-be' will do exactly as they please...and get away with it.

    At work, we have a specially dedicated wall-board where we pin all our parking tickets. Every few months, we send them off to the company that issues them. One of my colleagues is brilliant at Origami, so the parking tickets often go into the envelope in the shape of dogs, swans, flowers, etc. Refusal to pay fines is the way we fight back.

    All the best for your new job on Monday! I trained at GRI and had great fun there.

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  • Wow!!

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  • Mags, hahahah!!! refusal to pay fines??? Oh, outstanding soldier!!!! I salute you!!!!

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  • again hcps being penalised.
    anything to make a quick buck.

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  • I use to work at LGI paking was horrendous, had to wait for a permit to park which took months in the end i left. My sister or brother was continuously dropping me off to work since public transport was unreliable and trains/buses only run from a certain period of time, not only that to wait out there on your own for a train 5 in the morning seriously was not safe. From there i moved to Dewsbury Hospital A&E, closer to home but yet again pay for parking.
    I think its ridiculous staff having to pay, also as above i totally agree with the comments made, i use to finish at 1am i mean what are they expecting for us to do catch a bus home at 1am?! Walking out of work 1am to my car was very unsafe, as i never did manage to get parking safe on a tiwlight shift and had to park put on the streets. Agree consultants are prioritised not sure why!

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