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‘Well deserved’ pay rise

Unite NHS members in Scotland vote to accept pay offer
Ryan Fletcher, Monday, August 20th, 2018


Unite NHS members in Scotland have voted to accept a pay offer put to them July.

 

A consultative ballot resulted in 71 per cent of members voting to accept the three year pay deal, effective from April 1 2018.

 

NHS workers in England voted to accept a similar deal earlier in the summer, following an offer from the UK government made after months of negotiations with health unions, including Unite, to end the NHS pay freeze.

 

The deal will see workers earning less than £80,000 be at least 9 per cent better off at the end of the third year, while those earning above £80,000 will receive a flat rate of £1,600 each year.

 

Unite regional officer for Scotland James O’Connell said the complex pay deal delivered a “well deserved” pay increase for members.

 

He said, “While we recognise the value of the offer to our members following years of austerity and pay restraint, we are not complacent.

 

“It is the start of a process of trying to make up for the years our members have struggled within a rigid pay policy. It is not right that they have had to wait several years to have their contribution properly recognised.”

 

O’Connell said issues around pay were linked to staff shortages in the health service.

 

“The health service has a recruitment crisis. Both NHS managers and the Scottish Government need to recognise the commitment workers in the NHS deliver day in day out, and the pay must reflect this or the crisis will deepen,” O’Connell said.

 

“Going forward we need to consider how we negotiate pay that will put money back in our members pockets faster and whether the Pay Review Body is the right mechanism to do that.”

 

The Welsh government made a pay offer to NHS Wales staff at the beginning of July, while NHS staff in Northern Ireland are also set to be offered a pay rise, although a breakdown in the devolved government at Stormont could delay the process.

 

Commenting on a likely pay rise for NHS staff across the whole of the UK, Unite national officer for health Sarah Carpenter said, “We regard this as the start, not the end, of the journey for true pay justice for NHS staff, which we will campaign for with vigour in the coming months and years.”

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