Airedale NHS Trust delays debate on laundry jobs

9:00am Friday 14th December 2012

Staff and union representatives have been given more time to respond to a report on the future of Airedale Hospital’s laundry.

The document, which was due to have been considered at the latest meeting of the Airedale NHS Foundation Trust board, recommends partially outsourcing the laundry, a move which it says could affect 23 full-time jobs.

The report also states that this option would require a capital investment of £367,000 compared to £1.2m needed to run the service at Airedale.

But following discussions immediately before the meeting, trust chief executive Bridget Fletcher said she was withdrawing the report from the agenda.

Later, Christine Miles, director of operations at the trust, said: “Having consulted with their members, union representatives requested more time to prepare a response to the report. The trust has agreed to delay its discussions about the options until the next board of directors meeting in December.”

In May, the hospital’s directors agreed to examine two options – a reduced in-house laundry or tendering for a partially outsourced operation.

Union leaders have warned that 36 jobs are at risk and a campaign to save them was launched by Unison, the GMB union and Keighley Trades Union Council.

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