Industrial action at GOSH: update for families and visitors 18 February 2022

18 Feb 2022, 4 p.m.

Since early February a small number of our security team have been taking strike action. We have been informed that this will continue until 18 March.

Our security guards are an essential and valued part of the GOSH team and we respect the right to strike and the right to peaceful protest. However, our first responsibility is to the children and families who depend on our hospital. Excessive noise and disruption in recent weeks has left children in tears, families and staff feeling unsafe and clinicians unable to properly do their jobs.

We remain committed to minimising any disruption for our patients and families and therefore on 10 February we applied to the High Court for, and were granted, an interim injunction placing a number of restrictions on what the union can do in its ongoing protests at our hospital.

Yesterday (17 February), we came to an agreement with the union and protesters, which are set out in a Court Order and a behavioural agreement, and include keeping protests within three specific designated areas. The Court Order ensures that the right to peaceful protest is exercised in a way that respects the setting of a children’s hospital.

If you are worried about your visit to our hospital, or need any support or further information, please contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) via pals@gosh.nhs.uk

Background information

Like many hospitals, we sometimes work with specialist providers to help us maintain efficient, high-quality support services. We have a contract with Carlisle Security Services to help make sure security at the hospital is resilient and complies with regulations in that industry. Our security guards are employees of Carlisle Security Services, and their terms and conditions of employment are set by Carlisle. These terms and conditions differ from those of NHS employees, and this is at the root of the industrial action. Our security guards do a great job keeping our staff, patients, and visitors safe and are a vital part of the GOSH team.

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