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Rail, nurses, teachers: Great Britain faces new wave of strikes

Status: 01/04/2023 10:44 am

High inflation in Britain is prompting people to protest in the streets – but it’s not just about money. Many have been burned, nurses complain of disastrous health care.

By Imke Köhler, ARD Studio London

New year, new strikes. Several days in January are marked in color on the strike calendar in Great Britain: nurses will strike again, paramedics, teachers, bus drivers and railway workers. The latter have actually been suspended again since yesterday.

Imke Kohler
ART Studio London

Allegation: The government blocked the deal

Although it’s different unions calling for walkouts, the end result for commuters is often the same: they can’t get from A to B. The woman will not achieve her job, and her business will have negative consequences; When life is expensive anyway, man complains about the added financial burden.

Mick Lynch, general secretary of the RMT, the Rail Workers’ Union, says it wants the industrial dispute to be resolved. But he hasn’t heard from employers in a long time: radio silence since mid-December, Lynch says. He accuses the government of blocking a deal and using the situation to badmouth the unions.

High inflation pushes people to the streets

In many industries, inflation of more than 10 percent has pushed people onto the streets, but it’s not just about money.

For example, Lynch, as he puts it, fights for employees’ work-life balance and for working conditions not to deteriorate: “If we don’t protect these conditions, we’ll all end up in this society like the low-income earners who have insecure work depending on what the employer recognizes at the moment. Our members have that.” Don’t want to.”

The government accuses the union of refusing to reform. The rail strike was not well received by the people. This is very different with nursing staff strikes. They find the largest support at 66 percent, followed by paramedic strikes.

Ambulances are in front of clinics

Richard Weber is one such paramedic. On his last shift – like many of his colleagues – he stood in front of the hospital for hours in an ambulance unable to be brought to emergency treatment. No free beds. Weber was frustrated: “It is very grotesque to me that a patient who can be discharged occupies a bed, and a sick person has to wait outside for eight or ten hours before being admitted in an ambulance.”

The problem: “It has to do with the whole system. We have too few nursing staff and too little capacity. The most important task is getting patients out of the hospital. We need to expand care and invest in the area.”

The Professional Association of Emergency Physicians estimates that 300 to 500 people die each week because emergency care no longer works.