Labour and Lib Dem leaders to address RCN congress

Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron will today address delegates in Liverpool and take questions from nurses, but Conservatives yet to confirm if they will send a speaker.
Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron will today address nurses at RCN congress

Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron will address congress and take questions from nurses at the event.

The two party leaders will also take questions from delegates at the event in Liverpool, as campaigning continues ahead of next month's general election. Nurses not attending congress can comment on Twitter using #RCN17.

Speaking ahead of their arrival, RCN general secretary Janet Davies said: 'The NHS does not need irresponsible politicians, of any party, offering "cheques in the post". The bus slogans and sticking plasters let patients down and they must avoid the temptation.

'Party leaders must put patients before politics by committing to the hard cash and staff the NHS needs.
'After the election, for the sake of patient safety, the government must scrap the cap on nurses’ pay and help to fill the 40,000 vacant jobs.'

Facebook poll

Last week, the results of a Nursing Standard poll suggested the profession is overwhelmingly in favour of a Labour government.

The poll on the RCN Students Facebook group showed 85.2% of the 706 respondents intend to vote Labour at the general election. The group has more than 18,000 members, made up of nursing students, registered nurses and others. One vote was allowed per Facebook profile.

The Conservative Party came second, with 7.5% of the vote (53 votes), followed by the SNP with just under 3%. The Liberal Democrats had just eight votes, while UKIP had five.

In the comments section, one group member wrote: 'Can't see how a nurse would vote for any party other than Labour.'

Another said: 'If you work in the public sector and you vote Conservative, you don't get to complain about cuts affecting your job or pay.'

One member said she had been intending to vote Tory until recent policy announcements by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Bucking the trend, another person said: 'We need the Conservatives to get us through Brexit and then we can work on pay.'

In other news