Documentary reveals four in ten nurses have earnings below the minimum income standard

The Channel 4 documentary ‘Who Deserves a Pay Rise?’ reveals that four in ten nurses live in households below the […]

Ian Snug
23 October 2017

The Channel 4 documentary ‘Who Deserves a Pay Rise?’ reveals that four in ten nurses live in households below the minimum income standard.

The Channel 4 Dispatches ‘Who Deserves a Pay Rise?’ reveals how far salaries have fallen in real terms since 2010, meaning many workers are now living below the national minimum income standard.


It investigates how pay freezes and caps are affecting public sector employees working on the front line in Britain, meeting a police officer who has been made homeless and a nurse who skips meals.

Figures from NatCen show that 41 per cent of nurses do not meet the income measure used by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation – up from 23.3 per cent seven years ago.

The figures show that greater number of nurses live below the standard than police officers or teachers, at 34 per cent and 30 per cent respectively.

On Friday the Royal College of Nursing delivered a petition to the Downing Street calling for the end to pay restraint for NHS workers. This followed an announcement earlier this month when Jeremy Hunt, the Health Secretary, announced an end to the public sector pay cap.


The RCN has once again repeated called or an above inflation pay rise.

Janet Davies, Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said:

“This is a timely pre-Budget reminder that the Government has driven down living standards with year after year of real-terms pay cuts, leaving more nursing staff falling behind the acceptable income standard than other public sector workers.

“After telling the Commons that it has scrapped the cap on pay, the Government must put its money where its mouth is next month. The Budget must commit the funding to give nurses an above inflation pay award – anything less amounts to another pay cut.


“The Chancellor cannot ask the NHS to make other cuts to cover pay rises – it must be given new funding to cover the cost.”

The Documentary, Who Deserves a Pay Rise?’,  will air tonight (23/10/2017) on Channel 4 at 8pm.

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