Who is on strike in May and June 2024?

NHS workers, museum workers and Heathrow Airport staff are striking

Find out who is striking, why, and what services will be affected in our round-up.

Read our report below to find out when industrial action is planned for the coming months.

Cumberland Urgent Care Team: 24 April to 8 May

Approved mental health professionals (AMPHs) in the urgent care team, which is part of GMB Union, began striking at 9am last Wednesday (24 April) and are due to continue until 9am on 8 May 2024.

This will be the third time that Cumberland’s carers have walked out in their fight to get their jobs re-evaluated, arguing that their current level does not reflect their responsibilities.

A Cumberland Council spokesperson told HR magazine that the AMPHs had their post regraded in 2019, but following another review in 2022, the role was not further regraded as the role had not changed significantly.

The spokesperson said: “The Council has a three-stage agreed process with the trade unions for trying to resolve disputes. The first two stages are internal and the Council has responded to GMB on behalf of its members at the conclusion of each of these two stages. 

“The third stage involves Acas supporting the Council and GMB to resolve the matter. 

“GMB notified the Council that its members would strike, before this option had been implemented.”

Fran Robson, GMB organiser, told HR magazine: "[GMB's urgent care team members] believe their work and responsibilities aren't getting the recognition they deserve.

"These workers are on the frontline of the increase in demand for mental health services, compounded by insufficient resources. [...] On top of that, they're on-call round the clock and shoulder the responsibility of adult social care outside regular hours.

"GMB is open to negotiations with Cumberland and urges them to engage in dialogue to resolve the dispute. Otherwise, members' action will persist."

Read more: Strikes and industrial unrest: FAQs

National Museums Liverpool: various dates between 4 May and 21 July

The dates in full are: 4, 5 and 6 May, 11 and 12 May, 18 and 19 May, 25 May to 2 June, 8 and 9 June, 15 and 16 June, 22 and 23 June, 29 and 30 June, 6 and 7 July, 13 and 14 July and 20 and 21 July.

Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) members employed by National Museums Liverpool (NML) are striking over the employers’ decision to withhold a £1,500 cost-of-living payment secured for the civil service last year, which NML says its staff are not eligible to receive.

In a statement, Laura Pye, director of NML said: “We were very clear when it was announced by the government that unless an additional grant in aid payment was given to us to cover this, we would be unable to pay it. 

“National government has also been very clear that the payment was promised to civil servants, and because NML colleagues are not civil servants they were not eligible.”

PCS general secretary Fran Heathcote said: “Our hard-working members at National Museums Liverpool love their jobs but are angry and feel undervalued because NML is the only one of more than 200 employers covered by the civil service pay remit guidance to withhold the £1,500 cost-of-living bonus.

“This dispute can be easily resolved if the employer agrees to pay our members what they are owed. If the employer fails to do that, our members will go back on strike over the next three months.”

A source at PCS has said no progress has been made in negotiations.


Aslef Rail strikes: 7 to 9 May

Train drivers are due to stage strikes this month as part of a long-running pay dispute, the Aslef union has announced.

The drivers plan to walk out from Tuesday 7 May until Thursday 9 May. Overtime is to be banned for six days from 6 May.

An Aslef representative said that drivers have not had a pay rise for five years, since their last pay deals expired in 2019.


DWP security: various dates between 7 May and 29 May 

The dates in full are 7 May to 8 May, 13 May, 20 May and 28 to 29 May.

Staff employed by security company G4S to work at the Department for Work and Pensions who are GMB members are disputing a pay offer that would mean nearly 70% of the security guards are paid the minimum wage.

Eamon O’Hearn, GMB national officer, told HR magazine: “These security guards work hard in a difficult, demanding and often dangerous job.

“They deserve a proper, living wage for what they do. G4S seem unwilling to provide that, so workers are taking matters into their own hands.”

A G4S spokesperson told HR magazine: "We're disappointed that the GMB have refused to take our improved pay offer to their members. We will continue to try to reach an amicable agreement without the need for industrial action.

“In the event of industrial action, we have contingency plans in place in order to minimise disruption to our customer.”

Read more: Royal Mail settles dispute after 14 months of strikes

Heathrow Airport: 7 to 13 May

Unite union representatives have said that 800 of its members will strike due to Heathrow’s decision to outsource roles.

Heathrow Airport leaders announced that workers in passenger services (who assist travellers to catch connecting flights), trolley operations, and campus security (the security guards who are responsible for all workers at Heathrow, and vehicles being checked before entering Heathrow), will be outsourced by 1 June.

Both Unite and Heathrow Airport have been contacted for comment.

Barts Health NHS Trust: 7 to 19 May

Workers at Barts NHS Trust are to strike from 7 to 19 May, protesting the failure to pay a lump sum that other NHS workers were offered for working during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Unite’s members at the time worked for the outsourcing company Serco before transferring back into the NHS just after the imposed deadline for staff to receive the payment. So far, NHS bosses, locally at the trust and at NHS England, have rejected their demands and refused to ask the treasury for additional funding to cover the lump-sum payment.

A spokesperson for Barts Health NHS Trust said: “We considered a number of options but, under the terms of the NHS pay award, there is no legal way we can make this payment. However, we are talking to the unions about alternative arrangements to address the injustice their members feel."

Unite has been contacted for comment.

Abellio Bus Control staff: 8 to10 May and 13 to 17 May

Bus company staff in London are to escalate strike action after their employer failed to make an improved pay offer.

Around 40 staff who work in the control rooms for Transport UK buses (previously known as Abellio) and who control the bus routes, instruct drivers on traffic jams or accidents, and ensure overall safety on the routes, are to take a further eight days of action from 8 to 10 May and from 13 to 17 May.


Asda Lowestoft: 10 to 11 May

Workers are set to down tools for 48 hours from 00:01 on Friday 10 May until 23.59 on Saturday 11 May.

A GMB representative said that the strikes are over issues including cuts in hours, training, health and safety and ‘bullying’ management.

Keith Dixon, GMB regional organiser, said: “GMB members used to be proud to work for Asda, but this once great supermarket is being driven into the ground.

"Standards across stores are falling – there are thousands of health and safety breaches, including blocked fire exits, fire routes and fire extinguishers, along with faulty fire alarm systems.

"Meanwhile an estimated eight million worker hours have been cut across Asda stores, so things are only going to get worse.”

An Asda spokesperson said: "While we are disappointed that the GMB has taken this course of action, we can reassure customers that we have processes in place to minimize any disruption as a result of industrial action by the GMB at our Lowestoft store. We have taken practical steps in Lowestoft to address the points raised by the GMB and will continue to engage with their representatives with the aim of reaching an amicable solution for all parties.”