RCN to push ahead with December pay strikes – Nursing Times

‘Nurses have made their voice heard loud and clear’
23 November, 2022 By
Source:&nbsp Alamy
Nurses are set to go ahead with strike action next month after the government failed to meet an ultimatum set by the Royal College of Nursing.
The RCN has today confirmed that more than five days after it asked the UK Government to commit to formal negotiations on NHS pay to avert strike action, it has not yet happened.
“It is regrettable that the UK Government has yet to open formal, detailed negotiations”
Pat Cullen
Last week the college had set a five-day deadline for the government to act on pay or strike locations and dates would be announced.
In a statement today, RCN chief executive and general secretary Pat Cullen said the college would now “head for strikes in December”.
“It is regrettable that the UK Government has yet to open formal, detailed negotiations,” she said.

Pat Cullen
“Their inaction is pushing our members closer still to announcing strike dates in a bid to be heard.”
It is understood that strike dates will be announced in the coming days.
Thousands of nurse members of the RCN have voted to strike over the government’s pay awards for NHS staff and over concerns related to nurse shortages and patient safety.
A mandate for strike action has been secured in all NHS employers in Scotland and Northern Ireland, in all but one in Wales, and in 130 in England.
However, plans for strike action in Scotland are currently on pause as fresh pay talks commence there between the government and unions.
The issue of nurse pay was a key matter explored at this year’s Nursing Times Workforce Summit held on Tuesday.
Health leaders recognised the growing importance of pay in retention efforts, as well as the challenges of industrial action in the coming months.
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The update on the pay dispute comes as nursing has again topped an independent public poll of the country’s most-trusted professions in Britain.
Nurses came out on top among 30 professions of the annual Ipsos Veracity Index, with 89% of respondents stating they trust nurses to tell the truth. This was however a 5% decrease on 2021.
Meanwhile, politicians were in last place, achieving just 12% of the public vote.
Ms Cullen said the result would be a “huge vote of confidence from the public” that would “boost the morale of nursing staff” ahead of strike action next month.

Steve Barclay
“In large numbers, people are showing their support for our members as we push for safe patient care and a well-respected nursing profession. Nursing staff are patients’ greatest advocates,” she added.
When approached for comment by Nursing Times, the Department of Health and Social care referred to a previous statement from earlier this month.
In this, health and social care secretary Steve Barclay said the department was “hugely grateful for the hard work and dedication of healthcare staff, including nurses”.
“We deeply regret some union members have voted for industrial action,” added Mr Barclay.
“Our priority is keeping patients safe during any strikes. The NHS has tried and tested plans in place to minimise disruption and ensure emergency services continue to operate.”
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