MPs have voted not to remove the cap on public sector pay which limits annual salary increases for nurses and other NHS staff to 1%.
Following a debate on the Queen’s Speech in the House of Commons today, an end to the cap was rejected by MPs by 323 votes to 309, providing a government majority of 14.
“This is a bitter disappointment for nurses and others in the public sector”
The vote came as part of amendment to the Queen’s Speech put forward by the Labour Party last night.
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said emergency services workers “make us proud at the worst of times for our country”, as shown by their response to recent events including the Grenfell Tower fire in London and terrorist attacks.
These staff “deserve the pay rise they have been denied for seven years,” he said in a statement.
It followed a series of demonstrations across the UK yesterday to mark the beginning of the Royal College of Nursing’s “summer of protest” over the government’s pay cap.
”If the prime minister intends to address pay in an autumn budget, she should do so without delay”
The RCN described the result of tonight’s vote as a “bitter disappointment” for nurses and other public sector staff.
“This is a bitter disappointment for nurses and others in the public sector.
“At lunchtime, there were signs the government was listening to our calls but by the evening they voted to keep the pay cap in place. Our members’ ‘summer of protest’ campaign continues,” said RCN chief executive and general secretary Janet Davies.
“But we also know that a growing number on the government’s own benches agree the cap should be scrapped,” she added.
“We will continue to build cross-party support this summer. If the prime minister intends to address pay in an autumn budget, she should do so without delay,” said Ms Davies.