Taking strike action is never easy. As radiography professionals, we’re a vital part of the NHS team and we care about our patients. But doctors and nurses are slowed down in their jobs and patients face long waiting times because there are not enough of us to carry out the work.
One in 10 radiographic professionals are missing from the workforce. One million people are on waiting lists. We’re never going to recruit new people or keep our existing colleagues with the current long hours and low pay.
We’ve been asking the Government to talk to us and understand our concerns for months. Our door remains open. But nobody has taken up our offer. That’s why with a heavy heart we will be striking for 48 hours from 8am on Tuesday 25 July.
As one radiology department assistant from Southampton says: “I want better for my colleagues and better for our patients. And I want the Government to actually listen to us.
“And I want people to understand that we don't take this decision lightly but we wouldn't be doing it if we had any other choice. I have wrestled with it. I literally was up till four o'clock in the morning one night wrestling with do I do this?”
A diagnostic radiographer from Macclesfield agrees: “Something has to change. We cannot maintain this situation. We need to bring people into the profession somehow.
“Nobody wants it to come to strike action, but I don’t believe we have a choice. You can’t have equipment that no-one can use. You can’t have staff who are burnt out.”
We desperately need investment in the radiography workforce if we are to stand any chance of reducing waiting lists and increasing public satisfaction with the NHS.
Our members deserve better, our patients deserve better.
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