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Why are nurses paying for bankers' mistakes?


It is heartening to see that some nurses becoming concerned about the likely changes to our pensions. The Government is feeding the public lies. There is a surplus in the NHS 'pension pot' which is essentially going into Government coffers. The increases in contributions will mean that nurses and many other workers fund the deficit even further. Hutton has also stated that the cost of public sector pensions will decrease after 2014. The Government clearly do not need to have this fight with NHS staff. Andrew Lansley seems to have grasped this (even if he has not grasped many other issues within the NHS) and is reported to be opposed to the ConDem plans to attack our pensions. I understand that many nurses (amongst others) may be frustrated with their trade union organisations and, indeed, it is good to see them developing a united stand against the pension changes. However, I would ask whether any of those nurses who have have expressed their anger/dismay at the pension changes in online discussion sites like this one have responded to or plan to respond to the formal DH consultation on pensions - which is open until October? I would also respectfully suggest that any union is only as good as its members. Yes, the union leadership have a responsibility to listen to the members but union members also have a duty to make their views known directly within their organisations. The RCN website has requested member views to feed into the consultation. I wonder how many RCN members have done so? Despite the problems being faced by nurses - the pay freeze, increments and pensions under threat, the cost of living increasing etc - I do not see larger numbers of nurses turning up to union branch meetings or otherwise participating collectively to oppose the Government and defend our corner. If our voices are loud enough our union leadership will have to listen and that will benefit us

Posted date

27 August, 2011

Posted time

8:50 pm