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Union warns politicians against NHS spending cuts

19 April 2010

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A leading trade union has warned politicians that health workers will stand “shoulder to shoulder” if NHS cuts are made.

At Unison’s health workers’ conference in Brighton, Dave Prentis (pictured), General Secretary, will promise to fight attacks on the service by building alliances.

He will tell members that the NHS is not a “soft touch” for cuts and that jobs and services should be protected. Nurses, paramedics, hospital porters, cleaner and midwives will attend.

He will welcome the recent change in government policy, making the NHS the preferred provider of services, and will praise the government’s manifesto commitment on public sector pensions that ensure they are secure and sustainable in the long term.

Speaking about the damage inflicted by the recession, he will say: “Whoever is returned to power they have to learn that cuts to public service budgets won’t help our recovery – they will hold it back. They’ve got to learn that just as unbridled market forces wrecked our financial system, they’ll wreak havoc in our public services too.

“Unison will not stand idly by and let our members in the NHS pay for the financial crisis with their jobs, with cuts to their pay, or to the vital care they deliver to our communities. Whether they are fighting to keep their A&E open or demanding action over cuts – we will be right there with them.”

Copyright © Press Association 2010