Bill Esterson MP joins forces with Unison to call on health trus

Bill Esterson and Paul Summers

Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson has joined forces with Unison to call on the region's health trusts to reject proposals to privatise NHS payroll services.

Bill said he hoped other trusts throughout the North West would follow the example of Southport and Ormskirk Trust Board who rejected the transfer.

If other trusts do not reject the proposal, payroll services will be transferred to private company Capita who was selected as the 'preferred supplier'. It would mean that 150 NHS staff would be transferred to Capita.

Unison fears the move would result in staff redundancies.

Bill Esterson said: "I applaud Southport and Ormskirk NHS Trust for making a clear statement that they do not want to see their NHS services syphoned off to the highest bidder.

"This would be the start of what this Tory-Lib Dem government is aiming for - the wholesale privatisation of our NHS.

"Unison and I are calling on the other 12 NHS Trusts in the North Mersey area to follow Southport and Ormskirk NHS Trust's example and reject the proposals."

Unison regional organiser Paul Summers also slammed the proposals.

Paul said: "Staff involved in this proposed transfer are pleased that Southport and Ormskirk Trust Board have rejected the transfer and we call on all other Trusts involved to reject this break up of NHS services.

“The payroll and transactional HR staff ensure that the doctors, nurses, paramedics and other vital NHS staff receive their pay and other administrative services.  This is simply a cost cutting measure and job losses are feared.  We have received no information from NHS Trusts or Capita on assurances that no jobs will be lost.

“Many of these staff have worked in the NHS for years and they want to remain in the NHS. Why should taxpayers' money go into the pockets of private companies? It is wrong and it is also wrong to privatise parts of the NHS.”

The Labour MP said this is the start of the Tory-Lib Dem government's wholesale sell-off of the NHS.

Bill said: "Not only will there be job losses if the trusts opt to transfer payroll services across to the private sector, they will be endorsing this government's long-term aim of privatising the health service. This approach is likely to cost more money not less so it doesn't even make financial sense.

"This goes beyond basic cost cutting and goes to the core of this government's ideological drive to privatise on behalf of their friends who run the private health companies.

"I urge the trusts to reject these plans now - and to slam shut the door on privatisation of the NHS."

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