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The RCN has warned that unless the one percent pay cap is lifted, nurses will hold a ballot on industrial action later this year.
The government’s cap on public sector pay has meant nurses have suffered a 14 percent pay cut since 2010. The RCN believes, low levels of pay are responsible for the thousands of nursing jobs being left unfilled.
Michael Brown, Chairman of the RCN council, said “Our members have given us a very clear message that they can’t and won’t take any more.”
He added, “It’s a message to all parties that the crisis in nursing recruitment must be put centre stage in this year’s election.”
Janet Davies, General Secretary of the RCN, said, “The current conditions in the NHS are driving people out of the profession and putting new people off entering it.”
She continued, “our argument is not with the patients – this is about ensuring that they get the safe and effective care they need. The one percent cap of nursing pay is putting patient care at risk.”
A Conservative party spokesperson said “Our nurses do a fantastic job. We’ve had to take difficult decisions on pay across the public sector given the deficit we inherited – while continuing to boost the NHS budget so patients get high quality care.”
They also stated “The only way we can increase NHS funding, staffing or pay is to get a good Brexit deal so the economy prospers in the years ahead.”
A further ballot would have to be held before any strike action can take place.
Would you decide to strike in industrial action over low pay? Let us know your thoughts.
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