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Nurses expected to be offered 5% pay rise this week

NHS would need to find funds to help pay for the rise, but RCN warns the 5% figure would not be remotely acceptable to nurses
Image of a pile of £1 coins next to a figure of 5%

NHS would need to find funds to help pay for the rise, but RCN warns the 5% figure would not be remotely acceptable to nurses

Nurses are expected to be offered a 5% pay rise this week, with the NHS being told it will have to foot part of the bill.

According to a report in the Financial Times the government will announce the pay offer before Parliament rises for the summer recess on 21 July. The decision has been delayed by more than three months.

The newspaper also reported that the Treasury will not allocate more funding to the NHS than previously set out in the 2022-23 budget, which provided for a 3% pay rise. Instead, the NHS would have to find the funds.

NHS would need to find funds to help pay for the rise, but RCN warns the 5% figure would not be remotely acceptable to nurses

Image of a pile of £1 coins next to a figure of 5%
Image: iStock

Nurses are expected to be offered a 5% pay rise this week, with the NHS being told it will have to foot part of the bill.

According to a report in the Financial Times the government will announce the pay offer before Parliament rises for the summer recess on 21 July. The decision has been delayed by more than three months.

The newspaper also reported that the Treasury will not allocate more funding to the NHS than previously set out in the 2022-23 budget, which provided for a 3% pay rise. Instead, the NHS would have to find the funds.

The report comes days after NHS England chief financial officer Julian Kelly warned a board meeting that without extra government funding for a pay rise, other budgets such as those for cancer and primary care would be impacted.

RCN General Secretary Pat Cullen said: ‘Nursing staff would not find this remotely acceptable. Years of pay cuts from ministers should not be capped off with yet another real-terms fall in salaries.

‘There are tens of thousands of vacant nurse jobs and this treatment pushes more out of the profession.’

Poll shows public support for health workers to take industrial action

The reports come as a new poll by 13 unions including UNISON revealed that 58% of 2,073 people responding to a survey conducted on 1 and 3 of July believe health workers would be justified in taking industrial action if the government pay award in England is below inflation.

UNISON’s head of health Sara Gorton said: ‘The public clearly supports an above-inflation pay rise across the NHS.

‘People say they would also be behind NHS staff should they opt for strike action if a decent increase isn’t forthcoming. Ministers must act now rather than stumble into a dispute no one wants to see.’

Nurses in Scotland are currently considering whether to accept or reject a 5% pay offer, with RCN members being asked whether they would consider striking if they reject the offer.

Across the country, months of industrial unrest are expected, with rail workers, barristers and BT workers all set to strike in the coming weeks, and 115,000 postal workers in the Communications Workers Union (CWU) currently balloting on taking industrial action.

A government spokesman said: ‘The government wants a fair pay deal for nurses, doctors and the taxpayer, and is carefully considering the recommendations from the independent pay review bodies.’


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