Whistleblower: Mental health assistants went unpaid over Christmas

whistleblower mental health assistants went unpaid over christmas 1 - Whistleblower: Mental health assistants went unpaid over Christmas

More than 60 health care assistants at a mental health trust were not paid any bonus money for volunteering over Christmas and New Year due to a “miscommunication” error.

The 2gether NHS Foundation Trust, which runs mental health services across Gloucestershire and Herefordshire, has since apologised to affected staff and said the 65 health care assistants will receive their incentive pay in March.

A whistleblower, who does not wish to be identified, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) some employees are owed hundreds of pounds and have turned to food banks to feed their families as a result of not receiving their incentive pay for two months.

The anonymous source also claimed Trust employees were not told why they had not received their incentive pay for the duration of January and February.

When the Trust was approached for comment on why employees were not receiving the money offered for working overtime, they said it was because of “miscommunication”.

An open letter leaked to the LDRS, sent to all Trust employees by deputy chief executive Colin Merker, offered staff extra money to cover vacant shifts at short notice from December 22 to January 2.

The bonus pay was, however, intended for registered nursing staff only, and did not include health care assistants.

As cash incentive to work over the busy Winter period, the Trust offered:

£40 for normal working week shifts and £75 for weekend and Bank Holiday shifts for three shifts in Gloucestershire.

£60 for normal working week shifts and £100 for weekend and Bank Holiday shifts for two shifts in Herefordshire.

£75 for being on-call over a 24-hour period for Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Years Eve and New Years Day. 

The Trust said it has reviewed the communications sent out to staff and admitted “it was not as clear as it should have been”.

The misunderstanding affects 3 per cent of the 2,400 workforce.

‘WE ARE SORRY’

A spokesman for 2gether NHS Foundation Trust said: “We have only recently received queries from some of our HCAs about why they have not been paid the Christmas/New Year incentive we offered our nursing staff volunteering to cover vacant shifts at short notice over the Christmas and New Year Period (December 22 to January 2 inclusive).

“Our incentive proposals were intended to have been offered to our Registered Nursing staff only, as in previous years. We have reviewed the communications that were sent out to staff in relation to this incentive and can see that this was not as clear as it should have been.

“In light of this, we are making arrangements to pay those HCAs who volunteered to fill shifts over this period in line with the basis of the incentive offered to our registered staff.

“We are sorry for this breakdown in communications and hope that our HCA staff will see us honouring this as recognition of our thanks for their commitment to their colleagues and our service users. We will also ensure that future incentives of this nature are clearly communicated to avoid similar misunderstanding.”

Back to: Home Gloucestershire News

Help us share

You may also like...

HAVE A QUICK QUESTION?

Simply fill our short form and we will contact you back asap.

[contact-form-7 id="758" title=""]
X
CONTACT US