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Illegal for pharmacy owners to strike, says lawyer

Employees would be able to strike if they went through a ballot process, says David Reissner


Pharmacy owners would be breaking the law if they went on strike in protest over government funding cuts, a leading lawyer has said.

Two-thirds of respondents to a C+D poll earlier this month backed a strike in protest at the planned 6% cut to pharmacy funding in England. But healthcare lawyer David Reissner told C+D that contractors would breach their terms of service with NHS England if they took part in strike action.

"We shouldn’t see pharmacy owners in the same category as junior doctors, for example, [who] have a contract of employment," Mr Reissner, senior healthcare partner at law firm Charles Russell Speechlys, said last week (January 22).

NHS England might impose sanctions against owners that take part in strike action, he said.

Employees could strike

Pharmacy employees may be able to strike lawfully, provided they go through a balloting process first, Mr Reissner added.

The law gives immunity from legal action to workers who break the terms of their employment contract in order to strike, he said.


More news on funding cuts and strikes...

APPG: Government expects up to 3,000 pharmacies to close

Should pharmacists go on strike?

PSNC warns of 'far larger' funding cuts to come


Would you strike against the funding cuts?

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