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Liz Truss dismisses nurses using food banks as ‘talking down’ NHS

RCN says nurses will be dismayed by the new PM’s ‘dismissive response to the reality they face’ when she was quizzed by the opposition in parliament

RCN says nurses will be dismayed by the new PM’s ‘dismissive response to the reality they face’ when she was quizzed by the opposition in parliament

New prime minister Liz Truss has dismissed nurses using food banks as ‘talking down the NHS’ as she took part in her first prime minster’s questions today.

Facing the opposition in parliament for the first time, Ms Truss was asked by Labour MP Rachel Hopkins how she would address the NHS crisis, including nurses turning to food banks due to the spiralling cost of living.

Labour

RCN says nurses will be dismayed by the new PM’s ‘dismissive response to the reality they face’ when she was quizzed by the opposition in parliament

Liz Truss today faced her first parliamentary questions as the new prime minister
Picture: Parliamentlive.tv

New prime minister Liz Truss has dismissed nurses using food banks as ‘talking down the NHS’ as she took part in her first prime minster’s questions today.

Facing the opposition in parliament for the first time, Ms Truss was asked by Labour MP Rachel Hopkins how she would address the NHS crisis, including nurses turning to food banks due to the spiralling cost of living.

Labour Party quizzes new PM on her delivery of NHS promises

‘The new prime minster tells us that she will deliver on the NHS. Well that’s a turn up for the books. Because after 12 years of Conservatives driving our NHS into the ground, we have record waiting lists, people dying in ambulances outside A&E, and nurses using food banks,’ said the MP for Luton South.

‘So, given the prime minister has served in the past three Conservative governments on that watch, can she explain why we should trust her to deliver?’

But Ms Truss brushed off the question as ‘talking down the national health service’ and instead told the House of Commons that ‘the fact is that our health service did brilliantly in tackling COVID, in delivering the vaccine roll out and in getting this country back on its feet’.

Liz Truss ‘talking down the NHS is missing the point entirely,’ says RCN

RCN general secretary Pat Cullen said the new prime minster was ‘missing the point entirely.’

‘To suggest that the incredible financial hardship nursing is facing – having to use food banks to make ends meet – is talking down the NHS is missing the point entirely,’ she said.

‘Nurses will be dismayed by her dismissive response to the reality they face. They are struggling – at home and work – like never before.’

The prime minister’s comments come just a week before the RCN is due to ballot its 300,000 members about industrial action over pay.

If members support strike action, as urged by the RCN, it will be the first-ever strike by RCN members in Scotland, Wales or England by RCN members. RCN members went on strike for the first time in Northern Ireland in 2019. 


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