Two of the previously ousted RCN Council have been elected as the new Chair and Vice Chair.
Despite being previously ousted in a vote of no confidence by members, Sue Warner has been elected to lead the RCN’s governing Council with Richard Jones MBE re-elected as Vice Chair.
The RCN Council make key decisions about the direction of the union and will be tasked with appointing the new Chief Executive & General Secretary.
In September, Royal College of Nursing members voted to pass a motion of no confidence after members were left feeling ‘disappointed’ with the highly controversial pay deal.
An external review commissioned to investigate the pay deal revealed significant failings within the organisation with key decision makers, including the council, claiming they supported the deal despite being unable to fully understand it.
Neither Sue Warner or Richard Jones MBE mentioned any plans to rectify the issues identified by the review in their election manifestos.
Commenting on her appointment, Sue Warner said; “Our new Council will build on that, reconnecting with members and fighting to improve conditions for nursing staff so that they can provide safe and effective care to patients, wherever they work. The year ahead is a challenging one, but we will work together to deliver on these aims for members.”
Richard Jones, commenting on his re-election, said; “I’m delighted to be re-elected as Vice Chair. It’s an honour to continue in the role and I’m looking forward to working with our new Chair and Council, alongside our new President and Deputy President, to make sure we listen to members and that the College goes from strength to strength.”
Dame Donna Kinnair, RCN Acting Chief Executive, said that the couple make a “powerful duo” to the lead the college; “With the elections now complete, the College can face outward to all members, the public and politicians and invite each of those to join us in campaigning for fairer conditions and safer staffing levels.
“Sue Warner and Richard Jones will be a powerful duo to lead our organisation as it reconnects with members and fights vitally important campaigns across the UK.
“Sue and Richard, along with all other Council members, will give their considerable skill and energy to the roles. They have the confidence of members at every level and the support of staff to provide strong governance for the RCN.”
Critics have warned that the election of these candidates to lead the new council proves the RCN is yet to learn from its mistakes.