Yorkshire Ambulance Service


Over the last 18 months we have been in talks with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service management to get the GMB re-recognised within the trust for collective bargaining.  After what the union side felt were productive talks, we received a really negative letter from the Chief Executive.  The GMB were surprised and shocked by the decision not to recognise us and feel it is totally unacceptable and unreasonable.  Our members are represented effectively and responsibly within every workplace and we are not prepared to stand by allowing the voice of our members to be snatched away.  Your employer cannot dictate to you which union you should join.

Trust management has always indicated that the GMB would be involved in the joint recognition/facilities agreement discussions and this is referred to in their letter but we now know that the Trust have already put an agreement in place.  We only want to work together with management on our members’ behalf to develop the Trust into an employer to be proud of.  The Trust must be made to realise that you are an asset to be protected and treated with respect and dignity.

What Does This Mean?

This means that the Trusts’ management have removed your right to have a collective voice within your employment. The GMB see this as a way of Trust management dictating and directing you into joining other unions recognised by them telling you who you should have to represent your views.

As a GMB member you are legally entitled to be supported and represented on any individual issues, i.e. grievance and disciplinary hearings, and your GMB Representatives along with your Full Time Official will continue to do this.

What Can I Do?

A consultative ballot has now commenced.  Please note that this is not a vote for Industrial Action but a Straw Poll Ballot which we hope will send a clear message back to your Chief Executive letting him know that his actions are not acceptable.

Why Take This Course Of Action?

At a time when the Trust has real issues such as not hitting its national targets, poor recent ratings and local sickness running at close to 10% we find it amazing, but not surprising, that the Trust does not want input from its own staff on ways this can be reversed.  Indeed the Trust has now said that it would be detrimental to patients for the GMB to be recognised at Yorkshire Ambulance Service. This point alone was the final ‘kick in the teeth’ for our representatives in your workplace who have all worked tirelessly to maintaining the service to you, the members, in the face of constant obstacles from the Trust. 

The GMB will not stand by and let our members be attacked in this way, watching what we feel is a fundamental right taken, being taken away from you. As such we will be building a very public campaign with our National Press Office to meet the Trust head-on with this issue.  We are also communicating with the Labour Minister for the Ambulance Services at Westminster who incidentally is a GMB sponsored MP.  The aim is to do what ever it takes to get the Trust to accept that your voice in the local negotiations is just as important as the next.  With the full weight of the GMB behind this campaign we will fight to restore your trade union rights.


Both UNISON and UNITE agree that it is Trust management who need to make the decision regarding GMB recognition and we will seek their full support along with that of the TUC.

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