Earlier this year, health and social care workers across Cambridgeshire were boosted by the support they received during the regular Thursday night clap for the NHS. On behalf of this dedicated and highly skilled nursing workforce, I am now calling on your readers to revive the spirit of those nights by supporting us in our fight for fair pay.
At a time when we rely more than ever on those who work in the health and social care sector, nurses’ wages have fallen - by 12.6 per cent in real terms over the past decade. This is due to the Government capping or freezing their pay. Many nursing staff feel undervalued and are thinking of leaving the profession. This could lead to shortages that these vital services can ill afford and will put the quality and safety of patient care at greater risk. Across the East of England, thousands of nursing posts are already unfilled.
The Royal College of Nursing is seeking a fully-funded 12.5 per cent pay rise for nursing staff and is encouraging the public to tell their MP why Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak should commit to the increase when he sets out the Government’s spending plans for the next year on November 25.
Even though nursing staff are at the forefront in tackling a global pandemic in the face of a serious and persistent workforce shortage, the Government continues to undervalue them. It cannot hope to fill thousands of vacancies and protect high standards of patient care while not recognising the importance of fair pay. Paying nursing staff fairly for their highly-skilled, highly-dedicated and highly-acclaimed work is a political choice. Please ask your MP to make their choice to support #FairPayForNursing.
By visiting the RCN website – https://action.rcn.org.uk/page/69596/action/1 - members of the public can customise and send a message by email to their MP, asking them to back a fair pay claim for nursing staff. It is a quick and simple action you can take to support nursing staff in Cambridgeshire.