BREAKING: Ambulance strikes in England suspended after unions and ministers agree to talks

Image of ambulances in Easy Surrey, England. Credit: Tea and Biscuit Photos/

The planned ambulance strikes in England have been suspended after union bosses and ministers agreed to engage in talks.


Ambulance strikes that were due to take place in England this month have been suspended after union bosses and ministers agreed to engage in talks. As announced by the GMB union today, Friday 3, the government had made a ‘huge shift’ in its stance over a pay increase, as reported by Sky News.

“GMB ambulance workers announced a tightening of the derogations for cover on strike days”, said the GMB national secretary Rachel Harrison. “Less than 24 hours later we received a letter from the Secretary of State for Health, Steve Barclay, inviting us and other unions to pay talks”, she continued.

The union representative added: “This is a huge shift from the government, who for months have refused to consider negotiations on pay. Now, they are saying they are willing to sit down and talk”.

A tweet from the GMB read: “It took them over 90 days – but finally the Government have realised they need to talk pay.   They would not have come to the table without ambulance workers standing strong – and the fantastic support of the public.   Thank you”.

They added: “There needs to be a serious offer from government to start restoring trust with ambulance workers.  They should never have been ignored for so long – or spoken about so badly by Ministers. @SteveBarclay you need to build back trust”.

Following a “positive and intensive set of negotiations” today, both Unite and GMB have suspended the strikes that had been scheduled. Further talks will now be held with the Welsh government and Welsh Ambulance they said. Negotiations are set to resume next Monday 6 after what the unions described as a “positive step forward”.


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Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at