Follow Scotland’s lead on NHS pay, PM told

Health unions including the CSP have written to Boris Johnson, urging the prime minister to reconsider the controversial one per cent NHS pay recommendation in England.

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The letter cited the offer negotiated by unions with the Scottish government, which if accepted, will see the majority of staff receive a four per cent increase from April.

1 April is #NHSPayDay – or it should be! We’re asking people to put a poster in their window to support a proper NHS pay rise. Let’s brighten up our streets and show NHS staff they are valued.

‘When NHS staff in England contrast the Scottish offer with what you have proposed for them, they will feel increasingly bewildered by how you are choosing to treat them,’ the letter from health unions said.

The letter reminded Mr Johnson that unions wrote to his chancellor, Rishi Sunak, in July last year to request early negotiations on a new deal for NHS staff in England but such talks were not forthcoming.

Good faith

Unions, including the CSP, then entered the independent Pay Review Body (PRB) process in good faith only for the government to cause uproar with its own submission.

‘When the UK government’s submission to the PRB came to light three weeks ago, you will recall the response from NHS staff and the public,’ the letter said. 

1% unfair

‘The majority of people – irrespective of their political affiliation – believe the one per cent NHS pay proposal to be unfair. 

‘As representatives of 1.3 million NHS staff, we urge you to reconsider your proposals urgently.’

The letter concluded by warning that the offer sent ‘an extremely damaging message to NHS staff at the worse possible time’ and called for further talks to take place.

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Political choice

CSP assistant director of employment relations and union services Elaine Sparkes said: ‘The offer negotiated in Scotland shows once again that the derisory offer to staff in England was a political choice rather than a financial necessity.

‘Discussions must begin and the government needs to demonstrate that it values the extraordinary contribution NHS staff are making day in, day out.’

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