Swindon hospital workers vote to strike over 'bullying'

Support workers at Swindon's Great Western Hospital have voted for strike action over alleged managerial "bullying and harassment".

Union GMB, which represents 150 of Carillion's 200-strong workforce, said 97.3% of voters backed action in a strike ballot earlier.

GMB said the company's "intransigence" was "leaving members with few options".

Carillion said it was "very disappointed" as the collective grievance was still being investigated.

GMB said its members, who work as porters, cleaners and domestic staff at the hospital, "feel very strongly" that they are being harassed and bullied and that "the system for booking holidays is unfair".

The union said it had submitted a formal complaint by 109 staff over allegations of bullying in December.

'We are disappointed'

Spokesman Andy Newman said: "Many of our members have spoken to me and said that although they don't want a strike, they don't see any other way of getting Carillion to treat them with respect at work.

"A strike now seems inevitable"

Carillion said the "issues raised in a collective grievance" were currently being investigated but it "has been a lengthy process".

A spokesperson for Carillion said: "The process is due to be concluded this week and it is unfortunate that a decision to strike has been taken ahead of the conclusion of that investigation and ahead of a planned catch-up meeting with GMB next week.

"We are disappointed with the decision to strike.

"However, we have robust contingency plans in place and are working closely with the trust to ensure that patient care is not compromised should strike action take place."

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