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 PDA surveys NHS pharmacists before deciding on strike action

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The Pharmacists’ Defence Association (PDA) has undertaken an additional survey of pharmacists employed in the NHS, before deciding to hold their first-ever ballot for industrial action.

The PDA has more than 7,000 NHS-employed pharmacists in membership and the union is actively considering balloting those members regarding strike action.

The association said: “The experience of some other unions has shown that the government’s restrictive rules, designed to make it difficult for working people to lawfully take industrial action, means trade unions should test members’ strength of feeling before balloting.”

“Trade unions are not only forced to rely upon postal ballots, but for lawful industrial action to be taken, the result must also meet three tests- at least 50% of eligible voters must vote; at least 40% of eligible voters must vote ‘yes’ and a majority of votes must be for ‘yes’.”

The association is asking members in England, Northern Ireland and, Wales to show if their collective wish, insignificant enough strength, is for strike action. PDA has emailed the survey to all its members in the NHS in the three nations and will close on Tuesday 3 January.

“The result of the survey will direct the decision of the union over balloting, so all members employed at the NHS are asked to read the accompanying communication and respond to the survey.”

PDA Union National Officer, Paul Moloney said, “Whether they want to take industrial action, do not want to take action, or are unsure, our ask for members in the NHS is to complete the survey and let us know.

“If there is a subsequent ballot, it is essential that all records of where members are employed are up to date, so PDA members are also requested to access ‘MyPDA’ to check and, if necessary, update their membership record here.”

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