Saturday, February 4, 2023
HomeUK NewsBritain on brink of strike chaos as Government calls emergency meeting to...

Britain on brink of strike chaos as Government calls emergency meeting to tackle walkout crisis

- Advertisement -

BRITAIN will go on a crisis footing from today to confront strike action set to unleash weeks of chaos over Christmas.
Soldiers are heading to hospitals to train to drive ambulances to save lives placed under threat.
Soldiers are heading to hospitals to train to drive ambulances to save lives placed under threat8Soldiers are heading to hospitals to train to drive ambulances to save lives placed under threatNurses are threatening to strike after being offered a 1% pay rise by the government amid the Covid-19 pandemic8Nurses are threatening to strike after being offered a 1% pay rise by the government amid the Covid-19 pandemicOthers are being readied to staff airports and ports where millions hoping for a Christmas getaway face disruption by Border Force staff.
Plans ensuring supplies are not blocked by train strikes will be rolled out — with coal, steel and waste prioritised.
Ministers will today hold the first of a series of ­emergency Cobra meetings to fine-tune arrangements to try to ease the strikes’ impact.
The unions’ knot will begin to tighten from tomorrow, when 40,000 RMT staff led by Mick Lynch will begin a series of 48-hour walkouts running into January across Network Rail and 14 operators.
Massive blow to Brits as strikes threaten Christmas booze shortageHealth Secretary warns he is "deeply concerned" about the risk of NHS strikes
Bus drivers, driving test examiners and civil service hordes will also cease work.
Royal Mail workers walked out on Friday and yesterday, with more planned this week.
Nurses are set to strike on December 15 and 20, and ambulance crews on 21 and 28.
Mick Lynch will begin a series of 48-hour walkouts running into January8Mick Lynch will begin a series of 48-hour walkouts running into JanuaryRoyal Mail vehicles covered in show as the postal company continues with industrial action across its network.8Royal Mail vehicles covered in show as the postal company continues with industrial action across its network.Cabinet Office Minister Oliver Dowden said: “I’ll be chairing Cobra meetings over the next weeks to ensure our plans are as robust as possible, and disruption is kept to a minimum.

“But the only way to stop the disruption completely is for union bosses to get back round the table and call off these damaging strikes.”
The Royal College of Nursing did offer to suspend its action yesterday if Health Secretary Steve Barclay would meet to discuss the four per cent wage increase offer.
General Secretary Pat Cullen, who wants 17.6 per cent, said: “My door is open. I won’t dig in if he doesn’t dig in.”
But Foreign Secretary James Cleverly appeared to rule out talks. He said the Government was guided by an independent pay body “to take the politics out of this sort of stuff”.
Ministers have stressed that inflation-proofing an 11 per cent hike for millions of civil servants would cost £28billion — around £1,000 per household.
Mr Cleverly also hinted that PM Rishi Sunak would be introducing laws to ban strikes by ambulance and fire crews, a move first revealed by The Sun.
Quizzed further on Times Radio, he said: “This is about making sure we can provide emergency services for people.
“It is the first duty of the Government to make sure that people are protected.”
Shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting urged the Tories to “grow up” and speak to the unions, a sentiment echoed by Tory peer Ros Altmann who said: “This is life and death — literally it could be.”
But Mr Streeting refused to say what Labour would offer nurses. He also clashed with the British Medical Association by saying Labour would expect GP waiting times to fall as a result of further NHS funding.
Meanwhile, Professor Stephen Powis, medical director of NHS England, said NHS strikes would derail efforts to clear post-Covid waiting lists.
MAIL ORDER FILM: ‘Intolerable, catastrophic’
Hannah, whose business is run from the basement of their home in Plymouth, Devon, said the strikes are intolerable8Hannah, whose business is run from the basement of their home in Plymouth, Devon, said the strikes are intolerableHANNAH Daragon, 41, launched party games firm Hannah’s Games with husband Damien, 42, in 2016.
To deliver their products — including bingo and saucy games for hen parties — they rely on Royal Mail workers, who were on strike yesterday and will walk out four more times before Christmas Eve.
Hannah, whose business is run from the basement of their home in Plymouth, Devon, said: “We get 50 per cent of our entire year’s revenue in six weeks at Christmas.
“It is intolerable, catastrophic. These strikes are hitting businesses that are not long out of Covid.”
NAIL BAIR BOSS: ‘We’ll probably close for a bit’
Divino Beauty & Nails owner Dinesh Patel8Divino Beauty & Nails owner Dinesh PatelSALON boss Dinesh Patel says he will have to shut his business today because of train strikes — as he will have few customers and his staff cannot get to work.
Dinesh, 38, who owns Divino Beauty & Nails near Clapham Junction station, South London, said: “Train staff are already paid quite highly, and they want even more.
“But if I put my prices up by five or ten per cent, customers would notice and stop coming.
“We get hardly any customers when there is a train strike. We’ll probably close for a couple of days.
“It’s also not possible for our staff to get here without the train. I had hoped for a good Christmas.”
PUB LANDLORD: ‘It’s a big part of a night out’
Cardiff landlord Nick Newman said 'it's another smack in the chops'8Cardiff landlord Nick Newman said ‘it’s another smack in the chops’PUB boss Nick Newman, 62, fears rail strikes throughout December will be the last straw for many hospitality businesses that barely survived the Covid pandemic.
Nick, who is chair of Cardiff’s Licencees Forum, said: “We all need a good three weeks over Christmas.
“The rail strikes will inevitably hit that at a time when we are being affected by the cost of living crisis and rising energy bills.
“Thousands of happy revellers come from the South Wales valleys for a festive night out in Cardiff.
“It’s a tradition, and the train ride is a big part of it.
“The disruption to services is bound to have a big effect.”
SINGLE MUM: ‘We are all really upset’
Geeta Vaiwala, 45 (right), from Manchester and her daughter Malissa, 19, who will be affected by the rail strikes8Geeta Vaiwala, 45 (right), from Manchester and her daughter Malissa, 19, who will be affected by the rail strikesGEETA Vaiwala fears the rail strikes will mean she will not get to see daughter Malissa over Christmas.
Malissa, 19, is at university in London but could struggle to get back home to Manchester in time.
Property manager Geeta, 45, said: “Everyone who was going to travel on strike days has booked earlier so all seats are gone.
I cooked an entire Christmas dinner in an air fryer - the results shocked meI'm too scared to get out of bed at night as rats run wild in my home - help me
We have tried the bus, but they are booked as well. It is a nightmare and she is very upset about it. We wanted to spend the time together.
“The only option is to drive down and pick her up on Christmas Eve but it is a nine-hour round trip.”

Story Credit: thesun.co.uk

RELATED ARTICLES
- Advertisment -

Most Popular