RCN consults nurses in Scotland on new pay offer – Nursing Times

‘This is a situation that cannot go on indefinitely’
06 December, 2022 By
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Nurses in Scotland are being urged to have their say on the Scottish Government’s revised pay offer for 2022-23 as part of a newly launched ballot.
Members of the Royal College of Nursing in Scotland have until midday on Monday 19 December to vote for or against what the government has described as its “best and final” pay offer for NHS staff.
“It is right that our members should decide whether to accept or reject what the Scottish Government says is their ‘best and final’ offer”
Jackie Lamberth
The new deal would see NHS workers given an average 7.5% uplift, meaning Agenda for Change staff would receive pay rises ranging from £2,205 to £2,751, depending on their pay band.
The previous offer for 2022-23 was an across-the-board £2,205 pay increase for all staff.
The new deal would see improved pay increases of between £2,450 and 2,751 for those working between Band 5 and Band 8A. Those in other bands will still receive the previous pay offer of £2,205.
In November, it was revealed that RCN nurses in Scotland had secured a mandate for strike action across all NHS employers.
But strike plans were later put on pause amid fresh pay negotiations with the Scottish Government.
The RCN said it was not making a recommendation on whether members voted to accept or reject the new offer, but explained that if the majority of members voted against, the college would act on its strike mandate.
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Julie Lamberth, chair of RCN Scotland Board, said: “The latest pay offer remains below our expectations and what we need to reward us properly for the role we play, a role that is crucial in delivering safe and effective care.
“But it is right that our members should decide whether to accept or reject what the Scottish Government says is their ‘best and final’ offer.”
The RCN has been campaigning for a 5% above inflation pay increase for NHS nurses across the whole of the UK.
“If the majority of you accept the offer then the RCN Scotland Board position will be to accept,” explained Ms Lamberth.
“If the majority vote to reject the revised offer, the RCN will act on the clear mandate for strike action voted for by members in Scotland.”
Members can email PayCampaignScotland@rcn.org.uk if they have any queries about the consultative ballot.
Midwives in Scotland are also currently being consulted on the new pay offer as part of a ballot being run by the Royal College of Midwives.
Health secretary Humza Yousaf said: “I welcome RCN putting this offer to the members.
“We have engaged tirelessly with trade union representatives over recent weeks, leaving no stone unturned to reach an offer which responds to the key concerns of staff across the service.”
He added: “We have made the best offer possible to get money into the pockets of hard working staff and to avoid industrial action, in what is already going to be an incredibly challenging winter. If the offer is agreed this pay uplift will also be backdated to April.”
Mr Yousaf also urged the UK Government to “get back to the negotiating table” with unions.
“This settlement has been shaped by the unions’ constructive approach and I hope it is backed by their members,” he said.
Nurse members of the RCN are set to strike in England, Wales and Northern Ireland on 15 and 20 December.
Meanwhile health workers who are members of the union Unison have secured a mandate for strike action in some England NHS trusts.
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