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Anger over bank bonuses as nurses face pay freeze


Nursing union representatives have said it is outrageous that bankers were attempting to get bonuses when nurses around the country were facing pay freezes.  

A political row has erupted over the last few days following reports of a threat by the board of the RBS bank to quit if the government attempts to intervene and veto bonuses being paid to staff at the state backed bank.

But UNISON greater London nursing officer Michael Walker said the idea that bankers were seeking bonuses this year was “outrageous”.

Speaking at the union’s London nursing conference yesterday in Lewisham, he said: “Nurses on many wards could state that without a significant pay rise, they may be forced to leave nursing and therefore patient care could suffer…yet nurses are not offered a pay rise they are facing the threat of a pay freeze.”


Readers' comments (4)

  • Personally I think the whole system is mixed up. Nurses are on very little for all the hard, tiring work we do. Little time to have breaks because its drilled into use that patients come first. Not once are nurses praised for all the good we do, they just constantly dig and dig at the mistakes that happen within the system, when really theres more good happening then bad.

    Nurses even do doctors jobs for them half the time. If it wasnt for us nurses half of them wouldn't have a leg to stand on, they rely on us to tell them about the patient and there progression but yet they get paid almost double or three times more than what were paid when we're at the frontline. We're the ones that pick up from there mistakes and are told to inform them when X happens to a patient, because they can't be bothered to review a sick patient, even thought you have pointed out to them that you or your HCA has noticed early warning signs that the patient is deteriatoring.

    Look at footballers (which I'm sure I will get scrutinized for what I'm about to say) But they kick a football around for fun and get paid ridiculous amounts when were working hard to save lives and improving and promoting health and wellbeing to the public.

    Why can't we get a Bonus once in a while!!
    Why can't we go on strike for days on end like the postal service do!!
    Why because we simply can't afford to miss a days work with the little pay we get. Nurses salary really needs to be looked at deeply, maybe all them MP's out there should try our job for a day and then they will realise just what we do for very little money.

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  • My daughter is a teacher in her third year. She gets just about what I, as a trained nurse, grade 5 get after more than 20 years of nursing.

    It is a joke isn't it?

    When will the government realise that nurses need the pay rise AND more staff in order to do our work properly otherwise, PATIENTS will SUFFER.

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  • I've worked as an NA for many years and have now gone in for my nurse training. Even thought it will be hard slog for 3yrs, doing 80+hrs a week consisting of placements, paid bank work and studying, I'm doing it all to get into therapy. A lot of people are now using nursing as a stepping stone to other careers within the health care system. It doesn't mean we care any less, I appreciate nursing in it's fullness, otherwise I would not have committed to the course. But I really can't see myself nursing for more than 2/3yrs. It doesn't pay enough, you never get a break and the trusts don't supply enough staff so you work impossible shifts. I agree with the previous statement. Give the nurses a bonus, after all, don't we save lives?

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  • I don't think we get paid nearly enough for what we do; as you say we're saving lives. This country is messed up and there is so much disparity in terms of pay. I think we should strike especially if we're facing a pay freeze in 2011. Everyone else strikes when they don't get what they want, why shouldn't we? Either that or just move to Australia or Canada where they get paid about the same but are treated so much better with safer patient to nurse ratios. No wonder British nurses are leaving to work abroad, seeking better and more fulfilling careers and lifestyles; this will only increase as we get simultaneously pushed around and ignored in the UK.

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