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RCN accepts pay offer "with a heavy heart"

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) council "reluctantly" voted this Saturday to accept the government's revised pay offer for nurses in England.

The move came a day after thousands of NHS workers, members of the union 'Unison', voted to do the same.

Earlier this year nurses were disappointed when the government failed to give nurses working in England a 2.5% wage rise.

But a month later government ministers changed their offer to include a £400 bonus for the lowest paid NHS workers and help towards paying registration fees.

Dr Peter Carter, General Secretary of the RCN says that nurses in England have voted to accept the new deal "with a very heavy heart."

He adds: "The revised offer is imperfect but it is improved.

"It was only after months of campaigning by the RCN that the government, which had refused to budge revised its original offer.

"The government should learn the lessons from this year's pay negotiations - it should not underestimate the long-term implications of this year's pay round on the morale of the nursing workforce and it should remember that it is much harder to attract first class nurses to the health service by offering them second rate pay."


Related story: Unison members accept pay deal

Your comments: (Terms and conditions apply)

"In Scotland, we have at least recieved our pay rise in one go. The decsion was made by the Scottish government, and I don't feel the RCN or Unison, had any influence in this decsion. I feel the RCN should spend more time focusing on nurses academic and regulatory requirements (the job of the NMC), than on the inadequate working conditions, and poor patient care (due to poor staffing levels). The disparity between Scotland and England is not good for morale or patient care" - Name and address supplied

"It would appear that nurses in England are less valued than in Scotland and Wales. Where is the Agenda for Change going? This was to make the NHS the same nationwide' - Name and address supplied

"No, I plan on retiring" - Name and address supplied

"Basically, it means that the government knows that we will work for very low comparable pay and we feel that nobody is strong enough to put our case forward. At the end of the day we have no say in any wage increase and the government continues to treat us as they wish" - Janet Fry, Sherborne

"We've been sold down the river, yet again. They're all as bad as one another and certainly not worth the subscription fee" - Name and address supplied