Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust staff are set to protest next week over their ‘Dickensian working practices’, a trade union has warned.

Cleaning, catering and portering staff at Kingston Hospital, who are employed by the private firm ISS, are protesting over the right to sick pay and the London Living Wage.

GMB Southern, the union for all ISS staff working in the NHS, said workers are paid below the living wage, do not get any sick pay and are forced to work even when they are ill.

This will be the second protest of its kind, after the union organised a lunchtime protest outside Kingston Hospital last month.

The trade union has confirmed the protest will take place at 12.30pm outside Kingston Hospital on Galsworthy Road on Thursday, December 20.

GMB Southern said two people will attend dressed as Scrooge and Oliver Twist to illustrate the private firm’s “Dickensian working practices” and “poverty wages” over the Christmas period.

Helen O'Connor, GMB regional organiser, said members of the trade union would not stop fighting until their demands are met by ISS.

She added: “GMB will not stand by and watch highly paid ISS managers abuse our members and strip them of their basic rights. GMB will stand up to the ISS management bullies.

“All our members are asking for is a basic sick pay scheme and the London Living Wage of £10.55 an hour.

“They want the verbal and physical abuse they are suffering at the hands of ISS managers to stop.”

An ISS spokesman said: "We would be disappointed if the Trades Union were to hold a demonstration outside the hospital grounds. The company has not been informed of any plans so cannot comment further."

Kingston Hospital has been contacted for comment.