Nurses Strike: Protesters march on the Royal Sussex County Hospital

Demonstrators have marched on a hospital to show solidarity with nurses who are striking over wages and working conditions.

Union members came to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton to draw attention to the ongoing nurse strikes.

The crowd marched from the Royal Mail sorting office on North Road to the hospital, stopping traffic before showing their support outside the Eastern Road building.

Claire Jones, an NHS health visitor, said: “I’m really proud to be here on behalf of nurses.

“I’ve been with the NHS for almost 40 years and it’s really being pushed to the limit.

“More and more staff are leaving the NHS, it’s heartbreaking. This dispute is about payment, but also about patient safety.

“It’s really about the soul of the NHS.”

The march on Thursday December 15 featured a number of different unions showing solidarity with striking nurses.

Among the protesters were postal workers striking with the CWU and members of the climate activist group Extinction Rebellion.

The Argus: Claire Jones, 61, on the marchClaire Jones, 61, at the march (Image: Newsquest)

NHS Sussex says no trusts in the area will take part in the strike action coordinated by the Royal College of Nursing.

A woman who teaches student nursing said: “It’s not about the pay, our students want to support their clinical peers.

“We’re putting our students into practice while we try to plan under these conditions.”

The woman, who asked not to be named, said she felt the NHS was in the worst shape it had been in since she had worked for the NHS.

The Royal College of Nursing voted nurses to go on strike after trying to win a pay rise five per cent above inflation.

Nurses say their pay has been cut by about 20 percent in relative terms in recent years.

This is the first time in its 106-year history that the RCN has gone on strike.

A spokeswoman for NHS Sussex said: “While all NHS trusts in Sussex reached the legal threshold for mandatory action, last month the RCN confirmed the organizations where industrial action will take place. No NHS Trust in Sussex was on the confirmed list.

“The Sussex NHS is reassuring patients and the public that this means normal health services will be available on both days.

“NHS services are in high demand at this time and as such people are encouraged to use healthcare appropriately – contact the service best suited to your needs, ensure you attend booked appointments, or share Join the service when you are no longer able to attend and respect the health and care workers who are working to help you during this time.”

The nurses’ strike comes amid a series of strikes in recent months that have affected several services.

Railroad workers, postal workers and ambulance workers have all voted to strike as the cost of living crisis continues to affect people. Nurses Strike: Protesters march on the Royal Sussex County Hospital

Fry Electronics Team

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