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Janet Davies: Make your voice heard in the fight for fair pay

As the RCN consults nurses on its response to continuing pay restraint, now is the time to make your voice heard, says RCN chief executive Janet Davies. 
Government not listening_tile_iStock.jpg

As the RCN consults nurses on its response to continuing pay restraint, now is the time to make your voice heard, says RCN chief executive Janet Davies

RCN members have never been on strike. However tough things have been, they have always pulled back from taking industrial action, with patient care their priority.

But this is the sixth consecutive year that nursing pay has fallen behind the cost of living, and yet again nursing staff face the prospect of an increasing struggle to make ends meet. We know morale is low, and nurses tell us they are considering leaving the profession they love.

The NHS Pay Review Body has said pay restraint is unsustainable. A cross-party House of Lords Committee has also warned that it is affecting training and

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As the RCN consults nurses on its response to continuing pay restraint, now is the time to make your voice heard, says RCN chief executive Janet Davies 


The RCN is calling for members' feedback on its fair pay campaign. Picture: iStock

RCN members have never been on strike. However tough things have been, they have always pulled back from taking industrial action, with patient care their priority. 

But this is the sixth consecutive year that nursing pay has fallen behind the cost of living, and yet again nursing staff face the prospect of an increasing struggle to make ends meet. We know morale is low, and nurses tell us they are considering leaving the profession they love.

The NHS Pay Review Body has said pay restraint is unsustainable. A cross-party House of Lords Committee has also warned that it is affecting training and recruitment, but the government is simply not listening. 

Make yourself heard 

That is why the RCN's most senior elected officials have voted to ask our members how they feel about the situation at hand and test their appetite for doing more. It is a matter of listening to what they want to do next in our campaign for fair pay, including taking industrial action. 

This would be a big step for us, which we know our members will take seriously. Some are already saying it is the only thing that will make a difference; that our messages and evidence have so far been ignored. We want to know if this is how everyone feels. 

Tens of thousands of vacancies, nurses considering leaving, and potential nurses being put off joining our great profession due to the introduction of student loans: it is all adding up to a perfect storm for healthcare.

That's why the current situation is so critical, and why RCN members must take this opportunity to make their voices heard. 


About the author 

 

 

 

Janet Davies is RCN chief executive and general secretary 

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