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Date: 10 June 2006

500+ staff in Glasgow Royal return to NHS

UNISON, the main healthcare union today welcomed the decision of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde to bring its facilities management contract in the Glasgow Royal Infirmary back in-house when the current contract with Sodexho runs out in December this year. The union said that this meant that virtually all NHS services in Glasgow would be provided in-house with the exception of some PFI facilities.

Michael MacNeil (UNISON Regional Organiser) said; "We are very pleased at the sensible decision by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde to move to a more flexible and fairer way to provide catering services. Welcoming back staff into the NHS team will mean both better service delivery for the patients and better conditions for these members of the NHS team. We've been campaigning for years to end the two-tier workforce and get private companies in the NHS to implement NHS pay and conditions. This contract was the subject of a bitter dispute over low pay three years ago. This announcement is good news for all involved in the NHS."

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde's Facilities Director, Mr Alex MacIntyre said: "We have completed a review of the support services contract at Glasgow Royal Infirmary and decided to return the Facilities Management services back into an in-house service on the completion of the current services contract with Sodexho in December 2006.

"The facilities management team at the hospital will be working closely with the company and staff side representatives to ensure that there is a seamless transition of services."

Iain Anderson, Managing Director of Sodexho Healthcare, said "Sodexho is very proud of its relationship with Glasgow Royal Infirmary and the Health Board over the past 17 years. The senior management team both on site and centrally will be working hard with the Health Board and Unison to ensure a very smooth transition period and remain committed to our focus on patient care and the staff involved in the delivery of this."

The contract at Glasgow Royal Infirmary provides the following services; Catering, Portering, Domestic (Cleaners etc), and Security. It is worth around £10m per year and employs over 500 people. UNISON had made it clear that the new 'Agenda for Change' conditions that apply to NHS staff should apply to contractors staff too. Now the staff transferring in-house will move directly onto full NHS pay and conditions from December 2006.

This will mean: more holidays, better pay, access to the NHS pension scheme, and access to family friendly policies. The new single NHS employer across Glasgow and Clyde wants to review pan-Glasgow support services. Of particular importance is the Catering Review. UNISON argues that it would be easier to plan services across Glasgow (Catering, dealing with Hospital Acquired Infections etc) if all staff providing these vital services were with the same employer.


For Further Information Please Contact: Michael MacNeil (Regional Organiser - UNISON) - 07904 342 349 (m) Lorraine Dick (Senior Press Officer NHS Gtr Glasgow and Clyde - 0141 201 4429 Chris Bartter (Communications Officer- UNISON) 0771 558 3729(m)