London Underground drivers add to planned strike disruption in March
LONDON (Reuters) - Train drivers on London's Underground network and ambulance workers around England will take strike action next month, their trade unions said on Wednesday, as Britain faces a fresh wave of disruption from industrial action.
Britain has experienced increasingly widespread strikes since last summer in sectors ranging from transport and education to border force and mail delivery, as workers facing soaring inflation seek higher pay rises.
The Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen (ASLEF) said on Wednesday 99% of London Underground train drivers who took part in its ballot voted in favour of strike action in a dispute over pensions and working arrangements.
The strike will take place on March 15, the day the government is due to set out its budget statement, with the union saying its members in other roles on the Underground would also walk out on the same day.
Meanwhile, the Unison trade union said nurses, ambulance staff, blood collection workers and healthcare assistants were among thousands of National Health Service (NHS) workers it represents who will take strike action on March 8.
Nurses represented by the largest nursing union, the Royal College of Nursing, have paused strike action to enter talks with the government over pay, but the state-run NHS still faces a planned walk out next month by tens of thousands of junior doctors in England.
Ambulance workers belonging to the Unite trade union have also announced walk outs in March, while tens of thousands of rail workers from the RMT union will stage several days of strikes next month in a long-running dispute.
A planned strike by teachers next week is set to go ahead unless the government makes a "compelling" offer on pay, the National Education Union said on Wednesday.
(Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru and Kylie MacLellan in London; Editing by Savio D'Souza)