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MPs in new push for U-turn over nursing bursaries

Early day motion put forward by Labour MP Alan Meale urges government to reconsider its plan to scrap bursaries
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Nurses are being urged to write to their MPs asking them to support the latest push for a U-turn on proposals to scrap bursaries for nursing students.

Labour MP for Mansfield Alan Meale has put forward an early day motion (EDM) urging the government to halt proposals to replace the bursary with tuition fees and loans.

Looming workforce crisis

The motion asks the government to acknowledge the ‘looming workforce crisis’ facing the NHS, and to listen to widespread opposition to the proposals from the RCN and other healthcare unions and professional bodies.

It also asks that ministers realise that the combination of longer academic years and unpaid clinical placements means nursing students have little time for part-time jobs to support themselves while studying.

The EDM – a way for MPs to highlight and gather support for a particular cause – has so far been signed by

Nurses are being urged to write to their MPs asking them to support the latest push for a U-turn on proposals to scrap bursaries for nursing students.

Labour MP for Mansfield Alan Meale has put forward an early day motion (EDM) urging the government to halt proposals to replace the bursary with tuition fees and loans.

Looming workforce crisis

The motion asks the government to acknowledge the ‘looming workforce crisis’ facing the NHS, and to listen to widespread opposition to the proposals from the RCN and other healthcare unions and professional bodies.

It also asks that ministers realise that the combination of longer academic years and unpaid clinical placements means nursing students have little time for part-time jobs to support themselves while studying.

The EDM – a way for MPs to highlight and gather support for a particular cause – has so far been signed by 30 MPs. 

It is the third such motion on the bursary issue, with the one put forward by Labour MP Wes Streeting in February attracting 156 signatures.

Untested and risky plans

Unison head of nursing Gail Adams urged nurses to contact their MPs to ask them to back the EDM.

She added: ‘This scheme is untested, risky, and – in light of the disarray post-referendum – potentially catastrophic for the health service.

‘The government needs to pause, reflect, and immediately agree to work with trades unions to find an alternative solution to ensure a sustainable nursing workforce.’

Further information:

EDM 294

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