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Junior doctors to strike next month

Published on: 29 May 2024

Junior doctors will hold a five-day “full walkout” ending just 48 hours before the general election.

A British Medical Association announcement comes after weeks of mediation with the government which failed to produce a “credible offer”, the union said. Junior doctors have been seeking a pay deal which would restore their salary to 2008 levels in real terms – a 35 per cent increase.

The strike will start at 7am on Thursday 27 June and end at 7am on Tuesday 2 July. The general election is on 4 July.

BMA junior doctors committee co-chairs Robert Laurenson and Vivek Trivedi said: “We made clear to the government that we would strike unless discussions ended in a credible pay offer…

“When we entered mediation with government this month we did so under the impression that we had a functioning government that would soon be making an offer. Clearly no offer is now forthcoming.”

It will be the 11th strike by juniors since March 2023, including some joint strikes with consultants, though there has been no industrial action since February (see calendar below).

Labour’s shadow health secretary Wes Streeting told BBC Radio 4 this morning that if Labour formed a government it would not immediately meet junior doctors’ ask, but appeared to hold out the possibility of longer-term pay growth, saying: “It’s going to be a journey back to fair pay, not an event.”

Pay deals for 2024-25 are also now overdue for all staff groups.

The Department of Health and Social Care has been asked for comment.