It’s not often that nursing staff feel the need to get political. We get on with doing the job we were trained to do. Many of us cannot imagine doing anything else.
But we now find ourselves in a situation that can no longer be tolerated. Since 2010, pay freezes and the one per cent cap on public sector pay increases have left NHS nursing staff at least £3,000 worse off as salaries fall by 14 per cent in real terms.
The pay cap not only leaves nurses struggling financially, it devalues nurses and nursing
The pay cap not only leaves nurses struggling financially, it devalues nurses and nursing.
People are put off joining the profession and many are leaving.
Patients cannot get the care they need because there are not enough nurses – there are 40,000 unfilled nursing jobs across England.
A Royal College of Nursing survey of members last month showed that nine in 10 would support industrial action if the pay cap is not scrapped. Many nurses are now getting involved in a summer of protest to give the Government a final chance to remove the cap before a formal legal ballot on action later in the year.
Readers may see us as we undertake this activity and we hope they will support our aims. Without nursing staff, the NHS cannot survive.
Please support our campaign and call for the Government to #scrapthecap so we can continue to be there for the patients who need us now and in the future.
Carol Evans Trevor Allen
Royal College of Nursing council members
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