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Ten of 12 RCN Council members forced to stand down running for re-election

Ten of the 12 members of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Council forced to stand down last month, including outgoing chair Maria Trewern, are running for re-election, despite having a vote of no confidence in their leadership passed in September.

Chair Ms Trewern is standing for re-election in the South East region, where she is running against four other candidates.

Vice-chair Richard Jones is also standing, even though he too was forced to relinquish his position. But he stands unopposed in Wales, meaning he will be re-elected as a council member at the end of the year.

An additional eight of 12 members of the Council who had to give up their roles after the vote of no confidence are standing in the new election, according to the RCN’s finalised list of candidates.

The following former members are standing for election:

  • Maria Trewern (South East)
  • Richard Jones (Wales)
  • David Miller (East Midlands)
  • Cynthia Davis (London)
  • Trevor Peel (Northern)
  • Siobhan Donald (Northern Ireland)
  • Dave Dawes (North West)
  • Sue Warner (West Midlands)
  • Carol Popplestone (Yorkshire & The Humber)
  • Brian Murphy (Health Practitioner).

Of the 12 seats up for election, only Elspeth Caithness (Scotland) and Vicky Brotherton (South West) from the previous Council are not standing again.

At the RCN’s EGM in September, 78% of voters (11,516 votes) agreed with a motion of no confidence in the Council, leading to 10 of the 12 having to stand down.

The no confidence vote followed the publication of an independent report earlier in the month that found failings within the RCN with regard to their handling of the pay deal. Former chief executive Janet Davies was accused of 'closing down' scrutiny of the deal, while the College as a whole was told that it presented the deal in a way 'biased towards its acceptance'.

To be able to stand in the election for the Council, candidates must be nominated by two members in the nurse category of RCN membership. Candidates standing for election to become the health practitioner Council member must be nominated by two members in the health practitioner category of RCN membership. The elections are for one-year terms on the Council, effective from 1 January.

Voting for contested seats will be conducted by post, in accordance with trade union legislation, and will open on 21 November and close on 11 December.