Wales TUC Congress pass motions to improve maternity services and health inequalities

By Lydia O'Neill Awards Maternity Services Covid-19

Representatives at the Wales Trade Union Congress (TUC) have voted for action against health inequalities in maternity and to improve workforce wellbeing for maternity staff, from motions proposed by the Royal College of Midwives (RCM).

Addressing the virtual conference, the RCM welcomed a recent grant scheme and the Race Equality Action Plan but called for more to be done to support community groups and find solutions to health inequalities, referring to the recent MBRRACE report highlighting the mortality rates among Black and Asian women and babies.

Presented by RCM Organiser Ceri Phillips, the motion stated: “Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities deserve better and the pace of change for race equality must be swifter. The RCM calls on the Wales TUC to work with Welsh Government to ensure that collaborative action to address health inequalities for Black, Asian and ethnic workers and within communities is a core part of its Race Equality Action Plan.”

Shortly after, the RCM proposed its second motion on workforce wellbeing, calling for more supportive and open working environments.

Presented by RCM National Officer Vicky Richards, it stated: “Increased pressures and demands are having a significant impact on the health, safety and wellbeing of NHS workers. We have seen COVID ravage through the system at a pace that has been on occasions, uncontrollable. The RCM believes that NHS staff should have clean safe spaces to rest and reflect, and access to hot food and drinks, including fresh water. Promises must be followed with action for safe and healthy workplaces. 

“Research shows that when staff wellbeing is supported, employee involvement increases, motivation and performance levels increase and outcomes for patients improve. Investment in staff is an investment in care for patients and their families. So it is in everyone’s best interest to have a healthy workforce in order to recover and build.”

Both motions received full per cent of the vote for support and implementation in ongoing Government plans.

You can catch up on the Wales TUC Congress here.