Health workers in Lincolnshire vowed to fight a "savage" package of cuts today, which their union said attacks the pay and conditions of 750 staff.
The NHS in north-east Lincolnshire has outsourced services including community nursing, specialist nursing for conditions such as diabetes and drug misuse, home care, and learning disabilities to "social business" Care Plus. Social businesses are run on a not-for-profit basis.
But the staff's union Unite said Care Plus wants to "railroad through" cuts by tearing up agreements, including the Agenda for Change which outlines national agreements on pay for healthcare workers.
Care Plus plans to axe £800,000 from its 2013-14 budget in addition to slashing £865,000 in the current financial year. The union says patient care will be hit.
Unite regional officer Dave Monaghan said: "This is one of the worst examples of attacking health service staff pay and conditions that I have seen."
Management has allowed only 28 days, from January 7, to consult staff on the proposals which could see cuts to overtime and unsocial hours payments, travel expenses for staff using their vehicles on business, maternity leave payments and annual leave and downgrading posts.
And "management is refusing union representatives permission to address their members at the consultation sessions," Mr Monaghan said. "That's disgraceful."
Foreign Minister Alistair Burt's admission that the Cameron government has "supported" a survey of attitudes to US drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal areas amounts to a tacit admission of British involvement.