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Home   /   The Big Idea – The UK is Striking
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The UK has faced striking from multiple sections of the work force throughout 2023. Transport workers, junior doctors, teachers alike have been striking over pay and unfavourable working conditions. In February 2023 alone, the UK saw its biggest day of industrial action in almost a decade with hundreds of thousands of workers walking out of work. With no end of the strikes in sight, October is set to face striking from junior doctors and consultants as well as train and London underground workers.

The cost of living crisis has forced workers to take industrial action as their wages do not reflect the rates of inflation. Junior doctors will strike for four days this autumn, making it their sixth walk out this year. The British Medical association is asking for a 35% pay increase to make up for 15 years of below-inflation wage rises. The government so far has given junior doctors a 6% pay increase plus an extra £1250.00 which works out for an average of 9%. Ministers currently say this pay increase is the final settlement.

The impact on the general public does not go unnoticed with thousands of people being stranded last Christmas by train strikes nationwide. The NHS and ministers have also said strikes by doctors is a factor in the increasing amount of people waiting for treatment, with figures showing the hospital waiting list has reached 7.5 million.

Yet, as an advertising campaign started run by the trade union states, junior doctors make just £14.09 an hour. The advertisement compared this to a barista earning £14.10 an hour, asking is this what all their training and work is worth?

Today Overtime Online takes to the streets of London to ask the public if this rate of pay junior doctors earn, justifies their strike action in the coming months?

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We do have strikes in Australia but it’s obvious there’s a lot of strikes going on in the UK we’ve been aware of the junior doctor strikes, many have come over to Australia to work which has been good for us.

Rob Park 39, General Practitioner

Yes, because I must work and go into London every day and it makes it very difficult when you work an eight hours shift and then we have to try and get home at the end of the night and everyone is in the same boat. You can’t get upset about it but it makes life difficult.

Marie Clarke, 47

Yes mostly the rail strikes because I don’t drive being in London, most people don’t have cars. So mostly affected when the tubes strike and when I’m heading home to visit the family.

Zara Adams, 24

Strikes: Who is taking industrial action in 2023 and when? | UK News | Sky News

Junior doctors and consultants to strike together in England – BBC News

October 2023 strikes from NHS hospital consultants to junior doctors | UK News | Metro News

UK strikes 2023: Which workforces are striking or threatening to strike? | Evening Standard

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May 2024