COVID-19 VACCINATIONS: If, in addition to indemnity for your main employment, you would like cover for delivering COVID-19 Vaccinations please apply for our standalone extension Apply Today

Home  »   Latest NewsPolicy   »   Right to Strike update: Government’s Strikes Bill becomes law

Right to Strike update: Government’s Strikes Bill becomes law

The Westminster government’s Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill has now been passed and will become law, despite the opposition of trade unions and the efforts of many members of the House of Lords to challenge it.

Thu 3rd August 2023 The PDA

The Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Act 2023 now means that workers in health, education, fire, transport, border security and nuclear decommissioning who vote to strike could nevertheless be required to work, and sacked if they refuse to do so.

The PDA believes that exercising the right to strike when negotiations break down is a fundamental right. It’s not one that pharmacists would ever use lightly and, even then, it means trade unions navigating tough legal restrictions, including winning a ballot, which must be conducted by post, and must be won by high thresholds. It also means workers being prepared to lose pay for the days that they’re on strike.

But when employers won’t negotiate, exercising the right to strike can be the only way to bring them back to the table.

Paul Day, Director of the PDA said, “This week, public sector teachers accepted a pay settlement which was only increased after strike action. It shows that sometimes industrial action can be the way to help bring a dispute to an end.

It is extremely disappointing that despite huge opposition, this new law has been passed. Whilst taking industrial action is a last resort, it is a retrograde step that health professionals could now face the fear of dismissal should they exercise their fundamental right to strike if their employer says they require them to work that day. 

The PDA believes that such legislation will worsen employer/employee relations in the UK.”

More information on the new law can be found here.

Not yet a PDA member?

If you have not yet joined the PDA, we encourage you to join today and ask your colleagues to do the same.

Membership is FREE to pharmacy students, trainee pharmacists and for the first three months of being newly qualified.


Read about our key member benefits here.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

Cookie Use

This website uses cookies to help us provide the best user experience. If you continue browsing you are giving your consent to our use of cookies.

General Guidance Resources Surveys PDA Campaigns Regulations Locums Indemnity Arrangements Pre-Regs & Students FAQs Coronavirus (COVID-19)