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Public Sector Pay Cap to be Lifted in 2018

Sarah J



The government has confirmed it will lift the 1% annual pay cap on public sector pay from 2018.

Downing Street has confirmed that the 1% pay cap for prison and police officers has been lifted and that there will be wider public sector pay rises from next year. The cap offer for the police and prison officers remains below the rate of inflation.

The government has said it will take the reports of independent pay review bodies under consideration and said there would be scope for “flexibility” over public sector pay rises from 2018-19.

But, this move doesn’t guarantee NHS staff a pay rise as in March 2017 the NHS Pay Review Body (NHSPRB), the independent body that provides recommendations to the government on pay, advised that the 1% pay cap be continued for NHS staff.

The Royal College of Nursing has made it clear that industrial action is on the table if the government fail to scrap the pay cap.

A Downing Street spokesperson added;

“We will continue to ensure that the overall package for public sector workers recognises the vital contribution they make and ensures they can deliver world-class public services, while also being affordable within the public finances and fair to taxpayers as a whole”.

Janet Davies, RCN Chief Executive, said;

“This puts another nail in the coffin of the public sector pay cap but it must be scrapped in full. Today’s vague signals are not enough.

“Our campaign will not cease until there is concrete proof that the cap has been lifted explicitly for next year’s discussions on nurse and NHS pay.

“The Government has made a mockery of the independence of the Pay Review Body for too long.

“Tomorrow’s vote in the Commons is an opportunity for the Government to categorically state it has been lifted for nursing and other NHS staff. Ministers are holding their pay down and leaving professionals over £3,000 a year worse off – driving them out of health services and putting patient care at risk.”

She promised that campaigning against the cap will not cease until there is concrete proof that the cap has been lifted.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Elaine Moore

    12th September 2017 at 4:13 pm

    My daughter is a Mental health nurse and has worked damn hard over the years. To give them a 1% pay rise is an absolute disgrace. All the members of the NHS staff diserve more money. They need to get rid of that slime ball Jeremy Hunt. He is hated by all the medical professionals. He has ruined the health service.

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Patients are being mislead by unregistered staff using the “Nurse” title

Ian Snug



Leading nurses warn that organisations are employing unregistered care staff with job titles describing them as “nurses”.

A study has that found hundreds of roles which do not require Nursing and Midwifery Council registration used the term “Nurse” in the job title.  This, understandably, has caused concern that patients are being misled and staff could be working beyond their competence.

According to the Health Service Journal, Jane Cummings, Englands’ Chief Nursing Officer, has written to NHS leaders calling for them to ensure staff who use the nurse title are in fact registered nurses.

We found several examples, on the NHS jobs website, of positions which utilise the “Nurse” title but do not require an NMC Registration to apply;

  • Assistant Nurse Practitioner.
  • Enhanced Supervision Nurse.
  • Clinical Support Nurse.
  • Associate Nurse.
  • Complex Support Nurse.
  • Assistant Nurse.
  • Auxilliary Nurse.
  • Nurse Support Worker.

Jackie Smith, the NMC’s Chief Executive and Registrar, has previously said;

“If individuals are calling themselves nurses and they are not on our register, then from a patient perspective that is quite worrying. Employers should not mislead patients into thinking the person in front of them is a registered nurse when they are not. They have a duty to make that clear to patients”.

Janet Davies, Chief Executive and General Secretary, said:

“Support workers play an extremely important role but there must always be a clear distinction between them and trained nurses.

“As the shortage of nurses begins to bite, the NHS is increasingly filling shifts with more unregistered care staff. They do not have the qualifications and training of registered nurses and it is unfair on the all sides, not least patients, when they replace more qualified staff.

“The Government must not allow nursing on the cheap. When the number of registered nurses on shift falls, it is patient outcomes and mortality rates that are adversely affected.”

Presently, only the title “Registered Nurse” is protected but staff are calling for the title “Nurse” to also be protected.

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MP insists nurses are already well paid compared to hairdressers, plumbers or carpenters

James M




An MP has come under fire for saying that nurses are already well paid when compared to hairdressers, plumbers and carpenters in his constituency.

During last weeks debate on scrapping the NHS pay cap, Conservative MP Eddie Hughes said he wanted to ‘bring some context’ to the argument and went on to say that NHS staff already have a good deal when compared to hairdressers, plumbers and carpenters in his Walsall constituency.

But, Hughes has come under fire from NHS staff with nurses reiterating the issue not just about pay. The significant real-terms has also caused many nurses to turn to food banks and caused further issues with staff recruitment and retention as student nurse numbers significantly are affected.

Valerie Vaz, the Labour MP for Walsall South, said his comments ‘echoed the government’s contempt for our NHS workers’ and went on to reiterate that nurses are being forced to use food banks to make ends meet and NHS.

Speaking in Parliament, Eddie Hughes, said;

“I completely welcome the hard work that is done by NHS staff up and down the country, but please let me bring some context to the debate.

“The average income in my constituency is £440 a week, which is approximately £23,000 a year. I intend to advocate on behalf of all my constituents, not just those who work in the public sector. The average salary in my constituency is £23,000, which is about the same as a qualified nurse starts on.

“Many workers in my constituency are employed as hairdressers, plumbers or carpenters, and what pay rise do they get? They have had to work hard every year for their pay, and when we make the comparison using other factors, such as pension schemes, we see that in order to earn the same sort of pension a plumber would need to be putting away 43 per cent of their salary. Yes, we value the public sector in this country, but the Conservatives value all the workers in this country.”

You can view Eddie Hughe’s speech here.

Mike Adams, regional director of the Royal College of Nursing in the West Midlands, said; “They deserve nothing less than fair pay. As it is, we know many nurses work over their hours without pay as a result of staying on after the scheduled end of their shift or working through their breaks to ensure patients are well cared-for”.

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