UNISON supported the staff who argued for the increase based on the fact that they were not just providing personal care to patients, but were doing clinical work too, including patient observations, taking bloods and doing ECGs. All while being underpaid by thousands of pounds because they were on a lower pay band.
The HCAs, supported by UNISON, signed a collective grievance over this issue, and then set about getting support from colleagues, patients and the public. Petitions were signed, pressure was put on councillors and local MPs to support the HCAs.
The campaign continued in spite of the pandemic and this increasing political and public pressure has led to the three largest NHS trusts in Greater Manchester signing a framework agreement with UNISON to ensure that the regrading of HCAs and their backpay is agreed. This was accepted by a ballot of the affected UNISON members in those trusts. Some of the staff have already received their back pay.
Now the union is working with members in other trusts to campaign for a move to Band 3 for those staff, together with back pay. We aim to deliver for all our HCA members in the North West region.
When UNISON and its members rise to challenges together it can make a real difference to you – resulting in better pay and a stronger union for the future.