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VIDEO: Striking ambulance service staff in Cwmbran

ambulance staff striking
Ambulance service striking outside Beacon House in Llantarnam

Ambulance service staff in Cwmbran have been on strike today- the first national strike by the service since an ongoing dispute in 1989/90.

I met workers on strike outside Beacon House in Llantarnam Industrial Estate. They told me their colleagues were also standing outside their other office at Vantage Point House on Ty Coch Industrial Estate.

Today’s strike was called by members of the GMB union with a second walkout on Wednesday 28 December.

Unite is also balloting its member, with the result expected to be announced later this week.

John Phillips, GMB work place organiser
John Phillips, GMB work place organiser, in Llantarnam today

John Phillips, GMB work place organiser, was in Llantarnam today with ambulance staff and took part in this Facebook Live interview. He said the strike wasn’t just about pay, it was about  “deteriorating terms and conditions” and “poor patient care”.

Health Minister Eluned Morgan said: “There’s no doubt the two days of industrial action, following hard on the heels of action by nurses which have caused a delay in treatment for thousands of patients in Wales, are going to cause huge pressure on ambulance services. Ambulances will only be able to respond to the most urgent calls on strike days.

“Please don’t add extra pressure on services on these days and consider carefully what activities you take part in tomorrow and on the 28th. It’s important to call 999 if you are in immediate danger, but we must all consider very carefully how we use ambulance services on these days.It’s vital that all of us, as users of our NHS, do all we can to minimise pressure on our health service during the industrial action.

Today’s action ends at midnight.

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VIDEO: Striking ambulance service staff in Cwmbran