Thousands of NHS workers across Sussex are being balloted over strike action in a row over pay.

Unison is asking members if they will back walkouts after the Government’s decision to not accept a recommended across-the-board 1% wage rise for NHS staff.

The ballot will run until September 18, with members being asked if they will take strike action or action short of a strike.

If approved, the industrial action will take place in early October.

Hospitals across the county could face disruption if nurses, therapists, porters, paramedics, medical secretaries, cooks, cleaners and healthcare assistants take action.

Tony Jones, of Unison, said: “We all know the NHS relies on the good will of its staff.

“NHS workers have been badly hit by the rise in the cost of living and the Government’s move is unfair and deliberately provocative.

“Voting for strike action is never an easy decision – even more so for NHS workers who spend their lives caring for people.

“But the Government’s refusal to give the vast majority any pay increase this year is a slap in the face.

“A well motivated workforce saves lives so we need to cherish and support our NHS staff who work day in day out caring for others.”