Union leaders will visit nurses and other NHS staff at three hospitals during the strike over pensions tomorrow.
More than 100,000 nurses are expected to take part in the “day of action” tomorrow, organised by the Trades Union Congress. Members of Unison, Unite and the GMC have voted to take part in the 24 hour strike.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber will be joining the picket line at St Pancras Hospital in north London at around 8am, before heading to speak at a rally in Birmingham, which will visit the City Hospital at around midday.
Meanwhile TUC deputy general secretary Frances O’Grady will spend the morning visiting picket lines at St Thomas’ Hospital in Westminster.
The TUC predicts it is likely to be the biggest “union mobilisation” in over 30 years. The largest comparable protest was a strike over public sector pay cuts on 22 January 1979, which was attended by 1.5 million staff.
It will also represent a moment in UK nursing history. Nurses have taken part in work to rule industrial action before – especially during the 1970s and 80s – but famously stopped short of all-out strikes.
The protest will include NHS members of Unison, Unite and the GMB. The Royal College of Nursing, Royal College of Midwives and British Medical Association meanwhile have said they support the strike and have threatened to ballot their members over industrial action in the New Year, if the government fails to improve the deal on offer.