Junior doctors in England announce 3 days of strike in June over pay dispute - when is it

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Junior doctors are set to walk out for three days in June in their latest fresh round of strike action over a pay dispute with the government.

Junior doctors in England have announced a fresh wave of strike action in June for 72 hours after the latest round of government pay talks hit a wall. The strike will now take place between 7am on Wednesday, June 14 and 7am on Saturday, June 17.

The British Medical Association (BMA) union, which represents doctors and medical students, said a government offer of a 5% rise was not “credible.” This will be the third strike by junior doctors since the pay dispute began.

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Ministers said pay talks could only continue if the strike was called off. A government spokesperson told the BBC the new pay offer was “fair and reasonable” and said it was “surprising and deeply disappointing” that the BMA had declared further strikes “while constructive talks were ongoing.”

In response, BMA said it was willing to continue talks, and was hoping for a “credible offer” from the government. If the government did not change its position, the union said strikes would take place “throughout summer” with a minimum of three days of walkouts a month until its mandate expires in August.

The union has been asking for a 35% increase to make up for 15 years of below-inflation rises. The BMA said it had had three weeks of negotiations with the government but that ministers would not recognise “the scale of our pay erosion” which they said was equivalent to a 26% cut over the last 15 years - the amount pay has fallen once inflation is taken into account.

At the same time, their more senior colleagues, consultant doctors, are being balloted separately on industrial action in a vote which runs through until June 27. The latest move would cause “major disruption” to the health sector, warned NHS providers, if the dispute between the government and unions is not resolved.

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Last month, unions representing most staff on one key type of NHS contract did agree to the government’s latest pay offer of a 5% pay rise and a one-off payment of at least £1,655. That however did not cover doctors and dentists but included many paramedics, physios, cleaners and porters.

However, the Royal College of Nurses (RCN) and Unite, which represents some ambulance staff, voted against it. The government had been in talks with junior doctors in a bid to avoid a third round of strike action after previous walkouts in March and April.

Junior doctors to walk out in June (Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)Junior doctors to walk out in June (Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Junior doctors to walk out in June (Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) | SOPA Images/LightRocket via Gett

In Scotland, junior doctors have been offered a new 14.5% pay rise over a two-year period after negotiations with the Scottish government. BMA Scotland said it would consult its members, who voted to walk out earlier this month, on the offer.

Junior doctors make up around half of all hospital doctors in England and a half of all GPs. BMA represents over 46,000 junior doctors in the UK.

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