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Striking ambulance drivers leave picket line to attend 999 calls

21 Dec 2022 2 minute read
Ambiwlans. Picture by the Welsh Government

A picket line manned by striking ambulance staff was reduced to just one member within an hour of the walkout getting underway this morning.

The GMB union’s South West and Wales representative has said in one Welsh Ambulance Service depot all striking members have had to be called away from the picket line on emergency calls.

Nathan Holman tweeted a video of himself alone at Pentwyn service station in Cardiff just before 8am on Wednesday – less than an hour into the day-long walkout.

Mr Holman said: “I’m standing here on the picket line outside Pentwyn ambulance station.

“Unfortunately, all the members have had to go because, as you can see behind me, there’s only one vehicle left, they’ve all jumped on a vehicle and responded to emergency calls.

“So, just shows we’re still responding to the public.”

Around 1,500 ambulance staff in Wales are expected to take part in Wednesday’s industrial action.

Crews are still required to respond to critical 999 calls, but despite this the service is expected to be “significantly impacted”, according to the Welsh Government.

Welsh Ambulance Service workers are taking strike action over pay, alongside staff at eight trusts in England, totalling more than 10,000 workers in total.

GMB members working as paramedics, emergency care assistants, call handlers and other staff have walked out today

Members of the Unison and Unite unions are also taking part in the strike and GMB workers plan to hold another walkout three days after Christmas.

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Alan Murray
Alan Murray
1 year ago

If you’re unlucky enough to be seriously ill or injured, it will be of some comfort to you to know that the people coming to help and care for you are registered paramedics and highly trained ambulance technicians, not ‘ambulance drivers’.

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