JUNIOR doctors have voted to reject the latest contract by 58% on a 68% turnout, a contract which doctors rightly insist is ‘unfair’ and ‘unsafe’ for patients.
They will now ramp up their struggle against the Tory government and its attack on the NHS.
In the wake of the result Dr Johann Malawana, Chair of the BMA Junior Doctors Committee has resigned.
The latest version of the contract was agreed during negotiations between Tory Health Secretary Hunt and the BMA leadership, brokered by ACAS chair and ex-TUC leader Brendan Barber.
At the time Malawana had claimed that he had secured ‘the absolute best deal possible’ for junior doctors.
Malawana wrote in a letter to BMA members yesterday: ‘Following the result of the referendum of junior doctors on the proposed new contract, I am today resigning as chair of the Junior Doctors Committee of the BMA. It is with regret that I do so, but I believe to continue would be dishonourable and untenable.’
BMA member Aislinn Macklin-Doherty said: ‘I am very pleased that the junior doctors have rejected this contract which compromises patients’ safety
‘We must continue to fight for the NHS that Britain deserves.
‘The government is like a pack of cards falling down.
‘They are totally incompetent. We need a new message and a fresh start, someone like Jeremy Corbyn.
‘The only thing so far that seems to make a difference to this extremely stubborn and incompetent government is strike action. There is no choice but to proceed with further action.’
BMA member Dr Mohammed Latif said: ‘The turnout has shown the resolve of the juniors doctors to pursue a fair contract to improve the conditions of those working in the NHS and those using the NHS.
‘The NUT teachers are out on strike today, there is a resounding NO for the junior doctors contract. This is just a small proportion of public sector workers who are dissatisfied with government interference in the public sector.
‘Theresa May, if elected, will carry on the baton which Cameron and Hunt carried.
‘They are trying to preserve the Tory ideology and we have to counter that as much as possible.
‘The only way we will protect the public services and the NHS from privatisation is if we all come out together to stand our ground and stand by our principles.’