The move from the union’s health executive will mean that it and other staff side organisations will begin gathering evidence for the NHS Pay Review Body (PRB), which covers nurses and most non-medical staff.
Then, the PRB will make a decision as to whether a pay rise is needed and can make recommendation to the government.
However the ruling of the PRB is not legally binding and ultimately the government will make the final decision about whether or not nurses and their colleagues will receive a pay rise.
Karen Jennings, Unison’s head of health, said: ‘Nurses and other health workers are already struggling to cope with almost daily increases in the cost of basic necessities such a food and energy.
‘The re-opener clause was central to this year’s multi-year pay talks because it provided a much-needed safety net against just this situation.
‘We will be gathering evidence to present to the independent Pay Review Body to show that there have been significant changes since the deal was negotiated in the spring.
'Our members reluctantly accepted 2.75% this year but the 2.54% and 2.5% increases negotiated for the next two years now fall well short of all expected inflation figures.’