I addressed a rally in support of workers from St Helens and Whiston Hospitals to show my solidarity with them and the industrial action they have taken in their dispute with a private contractor, who refuses to match NHS pay and conditions.\nThese men and women are being paid less than their colleagues who are employed directly by the NHS. Some of those I met are amongst the lowest paid in the NHS, doing the vital jobs that are needed in our health service, such as porters, security, cleaners and catering staff.\nIt was clear that these workers, with strong backing from their union, UNISON, are resolute and determined. They have my full support and I am calling on the company, which made almost хЃ2bn profit last year, to provide the small increase – just 82p an hour in some cases ‰лв to ensure that in our NHS workers get equal pay for equal work.

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