As hospital doctors take strike action this week across England, junior doctors from the local London North West NHS Trust and the West London NHS Trust were picketing today outside Ealing Hospital.
They received support from passing vehicles who honked as well as the public and were also supported by local campaign group Ealing Save Our NHS.
One of the junior doctors said: “We are out here on the picket line not just to ensure the value of doctors isn’t forgotten but also to ensure we can provide the best care for our patients and deliver a safe NHS for all.”
Earlier today, the co-chairs of the junior doctor committee, Dr Rob Laurenson and Dr Vivek Trivedi from the BMA said: “We remain open to entering talks with the Government anytime and anywhere to bring this dispute to a swift resolution and restore the pay that junior doctors have lost. If the Health Secretary is truly committed to this, then he needs to drop these unreasonable pre-conditions and begin proper negotiations with us. It is Steve Barclay who is stopping talks happening by putting up barriers he knows our members cannot accept.
“The preconditions go against the very thing junior doctors are in dispute over. It begs the question; does he even understand why doctors are so angry? Over several years this Government has broken trust with junior doctors, imposed changes to our work contracts without agreement and excluded junior doctors from pay awards. So, it is really no surprise that we want to see more from the Secretary of State than a vague last-minute letter with impossible preconditions.
“This Government has had months to talk to us and produce a serious offer. The fact that strike action is happening is 100% the fault of Steve Barclay who shows no real commitment to resolving this dispute. An 11th hour suggestion of talks is a facade. He is kicking the can down the road, delaying any meaningful discussion, and failing to show any credible evidence of starting an honest conversation to end the dispute. Patients and doctors want a quick end to this dispute, but it seems the Government want to prolong it. So, we are asking him to drop the barriers he has put in place and start talking – doctors and patients deserve nothing less.”