Nurses in Derby are to be asked this week whether they want to take industrial action over re-banding proposals.
Ballot papers will go out to almost 300 band 6 theatre nurses at Derby Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which wants to move them down to band 5.
Similar proposals are expected for other hospital departments within the next ten days, said Unison regional organiser Jenny Flood. ‘It is not a happy situation,’ she added. ‘We do not want to be in dispute like this, it is not good for patients or staff.’
Ms Flood hopes that the mediator ACAS may be able to end the dispute – but there has been no official attempt by the trust to call on its services yet.
But Tony Ridley, the trust’s HR director warned that industrial action could threaten jobs. ‘We sincerely hope that the dispute will not escalate further,’ he said. ‘Any form of industrial action will have financial consequences and will result in us having to take more drastic action which could potentially include redundancies. This is a step the trust has always tried to avoid.’
The RCN withdrew from the dispute last month after some concessions were made by the trust.