On the 18 December 2019 NIPSA members played an outstanding role in the biggest strike action that the Health Service has seen in many years.  We thank all of our Branches and members who took a stand to defend your NHS.  It is important to note the huge support that was given from the public and patients on the day.

The action has forced significant concessions from the employers but has not sufficiently addressed the two key issues, pay justice and safe staffing, that NIPSA members are fighting for. 

NIPSA is seeking:

Pay Justice

Value of Scotland (currently valued at approx. £170 million).

Safe Staffing

Establish an emergency working group made up of staff, trade unions, patient representatives and HR to address the staffing crisis.

Fill all permanent posts on a permanent basis.  No more unnecessary temporary contracts.

Develop career progression for staff.

Make paid in-service training available for staff.

No deliberate delays in recruitment. Speed up the process.

Resolution of local staffing issues.

Industrial Action Update

Our programme of industrial action is multi-faceted and comprehensive.  (Note: The wider programme of multi-union action is underpinned with Action Short Of Strike Action (ASOSA) that ensures all NIPSA members in health are engaged in sustainable continuous action.  Running alongside ASOSA is selective/sectoral action that is designed to allow NIPSA to apply pressure in strong membership areas and areas hit by specific pay and staffing issues).

NIPSA industrial action over January/February is as follows:


Only work your normal paid hours.

Don’t do unpaid work.

Don’t cover vacant posts (after 5 days).

Don’t cover long term sick (over 4 weeks) or cover maternity leave.

Take all normal breaks.

Selective and Sectoral Action in January/February

Selective action will be carried out in all employment areas to force employers to address staffing issues.  Branches are preparing their areas for action.

All Health Unions Coordinated Strike Action

NIPSA has proposed a coordinated one day strike of all health unions in January.

Action by Workers in the Public and Private Sector to Defend the NHS

NIPSA has proposed a one day strike that includes all health unions (including RCN, SOR, CSP etc), teaching unions and NIPSA in the Civil Service.  In addition NIPSA is calling for private sector workers to support the action as well.

Nursing Action

Future NIPSA nursing members' action will be aligned with RCN action.

Coordination with Other Unions

Whilst we respect that sovereign unions can make their own plans for industrial action we believe it would be in the interests of all union members if maximum coordination between unions can be achieved.

However, it continues to be an important objective for NIPSA to strongly support coordination with other unions when it is appropriate. 

Should you have any queries please contact your Branch Secretary.

Maria Morgan
Assistant Secretary