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Everyone knows it’s not a single straw that breaks the camel’s back. It’s that last straw, piled on top of so many others, that finally makes the camel give way.
Well, the Government has placed their last straw. They started by proposing to extend routine working hours from 60 to 90 per week, added on the proposal to remove vital safeguards (which discourage employers from making junior doctors work dangerously long hours, thereby protecting both patient and doctor safety) and piled on the proposal that means pay would no longer match the experience junior doctors gain throughout their training. And then came that final straw: all these ‘proposals’ must be accepted or they will be imposed.
But we will not give way!
Last month we informed the Government that we could not re-enter negotiations for a junior doctors’ contract and gave them our three key reasons. We added to that in our blog ‘10 reasons why we are not re-entering negotiations’. And now we are planning to pile on another #50000reasons why we cannot accept the DDRB’s pay recommendations and cannot re-enter talks.
Why 50,000? Because that’s how many junior doctors there are in the UK and we believe every single one of you has your own personal reason why you cannot accept the proposals. Already, many of you have taken to Twitter to share yours, including:
And it’s not just doctors who will be affected – these proposals would have far-reaching, negative consequences for your friends and families, patients, and the NHS as a whole.
We need a contract that is safe and fair; we need the Government to understand that what they are proposing is neither safe nor fair; and we need you to tell them why.
If we stand together, we can show the Government that it has underestimated and undervalued junior doctors, and demonstrate the wide and varied impact that the proposals will have on our working lives. If we stand united, we can get the deal we deserve.
You can support the #50000reasons campaign by sharing your stories on Twitter and Facebook, via BMA Communities and regional JDC meetings, but most of all by telling us directly at [email protected]
Kitty Mohan & Andrew Collier
BMA junior doctors committee co-chairs