Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Nurses 'realise pay rises are difficult' - RCN


Nurses ‘live in the real world’ and understand that pay rises are difficult in the current climate, according the Royal College of Nursing.

RCN chief executive and general secretary Peter Carter was responding to news that public sector pay will be limited to 1 per cent for two years from 2011.

He said: “Nurses and healthcare assistants will be concerned by the proposed cap on pay rises.

“However, the RCN remains committed to defending our members’ jobs and ensuring they are appropriately paid, as well as ensuring patients get the high quality care they deserve.

“Nurses live in the real world and realise that pay rises are difficult in the current tough economic climate.

“We hope the government has learnt from previous mistakes that ruthless job cuts cause patient care to suffer.”

He welcomed chancellor Alistair Darling’s pledge to protect frontline services, saying demands on services will continue to grow over the coming years.

Sustained investment was needed to ensure patients received safe, high quality care, he said.

He added: “Greater clarity is also needed regarding how the NHS intends to save £10bn per year without allowing the quality of patient care to suffer.


Readers' comments (8)

  • Yes, I do understand giving pay rises is difficult. But this is an attack on nurses and midwives (and other public sector workers) who they count on taking it on the chin, yet again. How am I going to pay my bills when my pay just makes ends meet now? People who live alone are in real trouble already. This is totally unfair in light of the ridiculous salaries of bankers and athletes... and bankers are already crying about getting their bonuses again!!! It's absolutely sickening. This little 1% bone they're throwing nurses is way below inflation. Just how will we pay our bills? We already make way below what we ought to for the back-breaking work we do.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • There are ways to work with a 1% cap that even the RCN should be able to grasp!

    A flat rate increase for everyone (such as £500) - including the doctors - calculated at a level that means the total payroll budget increase is only 1% is one example (and that is just off the top of my head without evening thinking about it all you RCN pay negoiators!)

    This would ensure that those on the lowest pay, and therefore most in need of a pay rise, are the greatest beneficiaries.

    Lets just see what the RCN comes up with though shall we...

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • If i may say so,public sector workers including nurses will not be receiving a 1% pay increase in 2011 as the current gov't has stated that National Insurance contributions will go up by 1%. That means that whilst we get a pay rise it will be reclaim as NI contributons therefore it will be given by one hand and taken by the next hand. hence one minus one equals zero. or if you are a skeptic minus one.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I disagree absolutely with giving flat rate pay rises to every one. We have a pay structure which pays people according to the value of the work they do. That is not the same as saying that those lower down on the pay spine do not do an essential job. Flat rate rises erode pay differentials and have a demoralising effect on those higher up the pay scale. Our pay structure has come about after very long and difficult negotiations, and to toss it all away would be shameful. Whichever way is chosen to distribute the pitifully small amount there is to go around, my view is that pay differentials must be maintained. And there is an alternative. If one is looking to support lower paid workers, this should be done through the tax and benefits system, not through the pay system. Indeed, if one has followed the pre-budget reporting, one will know very well that people earning less than £20,000 pa., are the only ones who are actually going to be better off. So there is no need to structure future pay rises to benefit lower paid workers to the cost of higher paid workers.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • we have just had a report in the local paper for the rich list and the chief exec is payed 187000 which was an increase of 6% from last year. The diretor of operations was paid 172500 which was a 200% increase to last year. These are all people on the rich list for the country. i know they have to take the flack when something goes drastically wrong, but how many times has that happened? Nurses and healthcare workers are just expected to do the job for whatever they want to pay us. I know from talking to collegues that the majority of us would never strike unlike other professions. we just seem to get overstepped everytime!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous - Flat rate pay increases do maintain pay differentials - percentage increases actually increase the differences favouring those at the higher end. For instance:

    someone on £15,000 getting a 1% pay rise will get £150

    someone on £30,000 would get £300.

    with a flat rate increase they could both be £225 pounds better off and the gap between the two would still be £15,000 - the pay differential is maintained.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Dear Jamie
    Obviously maths is not your strong subject. Using your own figures I will teach you some maths. A person earning £15,000 earns exactly 50% of a person earning £30000 a year. I you give them both a £225 a year rise, the lower paid workers pay will rise as a proportion to the higher persons pay to 50.4%. A small amount yes, but if this is repeated, the percentage difference diminishes further. I also notice that you 'forgot' the issue of being paid for the value of the work one does, and the other point that lower paid people are getting help in the budget already, and it is higher paid who will pay for that. So it is absolutely unfair to deal them a double whamy by giving everyone a flat pay rise. By the way, I am a band 5 and so I am not sticking up for high paid executives, I am talking from a viewpoint of fairness. I am also old enough to remember that fixed rate pay rises for everyone have been done before. They didn't work then, and remain unfair today.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I trust that the RCN officers will also be pegged to 1%......

    Flat rate rises maintain differential pay and would be a good idea to help the lower paid members of the NHS workforce.

    Perhaps those on 8b and above should forego a rise at all.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.