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Pay: top CEOs earn more than 100 times the salary of the average nurse

Unions say there is ‘something fundamentally wrong with British society’ following the publication of figures by the High Pay Centre

Unions say there is ‘something fundamentally wrong with British society’ following the publication of figures by the High Pay Centre

Some high-earning CEOs take home more than 100 times the salary of the average nurse, new figures reveal.

GMB Union branded the figures ‘a disgrace’ while Unite said it should be a wake-up call to the government that pay for nurses was fundamentally unjust as they continue to work under immense pressure in the face of current staff shortages .

Huge pay gap between workers and top CEOs

The figures, published by think tank the High Pay Centre, revealed that some CEOs of top companies have already earned an average worker’s yearly salary by 9am on 7 January

Unions say there is ‘something fundamentally wrong with British society’ following the publication of figures by the High Pay Centre

Picture: iStock

Some high-earning CEOs take home more than 100 times the salary of the average nurse, new figures reveal.

GMB Union branded the figures ‘a disgrace’ while Unite said it should be a wake-up call to the government that pay for nurses was fundamentally unjust as they continue to work under immense pressure in the face of current staff shortages.

Huge pay gap between workers and top CEOs

The figures, published by think tank the High Pay Centre, revealed that some CEOs of top companies have already earned an average worker’s yearly salary by 9am on 7 January – just a few days into the working year.

Pay for a newly qualified band 5 nurse starts at £25,654, while the median salary for a FTSE 100 company boss in 2020 was £2.7 million.

Who contributes more to society, asks union

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: ‘Is it the nurse in an intensive care unit, saving the lives of those struck by COVID-19, or an elite investment banker, making millions, who contributes most to society? Which of them stood up for all of us during the pandemic?

‘The figures show that the banker could be earning 100 times more than the nurse. That means there is something fundamentally wrong with British society.’

Let workers have voice on wage committees, says High Pay Centre

The High Pay Centre agreed that the ‘vast’ differences between the pay of chief executives and most of the UK workforce may be harder to justify in view of the coronavirus crisis.

High Pay Centre director Luke Hildyard added: ‘Some of the lowest-paying jobs have played the most important role to keep society functioning through the pandemic.

‘Putting workers’ directors on to pay-setting committees could introduce some valuable ‘real world’ perspective into decisions on pay.’

Nurses may strike over pay offers

Nurses in England, Scotland and Wales have indicated they are prepared to strike over government pay offers. In England and Wales nurses were offered a 3% pay award, and nurses in Scotland were offered 4%.

A formal announcement on pay is yet to be made in Northern Ireland, but it is expected nurses will be offered a 3% rise.

The RCN has been campaigning for a 12.5% pay rise in the NHS, arguing it will help prevent an exodus of nursing staff. The union will use results of the indicative ballots to consider the next steps in its campaign for fair pay.


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