Unions preparing to recommend 'self-funded' pay deal to one million NHS staff

Fourteen healthcare unions are preparing to tell members they should accept the 'insulting' NHS pay deal.

The fourteen healthcare unions that represent one million NHS staff are rumoured to believe that staff are unlikely to receive a better offer - with unions recommending the controversial deal to their members in the coming week.

The rumoured pay deal would see one million NHS staff forfeiting a day's annual leave in return for a 6.5% pay rise over three years - which in essence is self-funding the rise.

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The 6.5% rise would see the average salary for a Band 5 Staff Nurse in the UK rise from £25,653 to £27.192 over the three years – an increase of just £1539 and well below the current rate of inflation.

Government negotiators are said to have claimed that staff working one extra day a year is “non-negotiable” while healthcare unions were focused on ensuring staff kept unsociable hours payments.

During the November budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced plans to review and “modernise” the Agenda for Change pay structure – 14 health unions, including The Royal College of Nursing and Unison, have been negotiating on behalf of their members since November.

Jeremy Hunt confirmed earlier this week that pay negotiations are still "on-going".

A spokesperson from NursingNotes said; "Staff funding their own pay rise is an insult to hard-working staff and is utterly unacceptable. Healthcare unions should be negotiating hard to ensure the 15% real terms pay cut that NHS staff have experienced is recouped".

The Royal College of Nursing previously said; “The RCN has been part of pay talks alongside all NHS unions. They are on-going and have not concluded. Once there is agreement in principle – and the Treasury commits to fully fund it – our members will decide if any deal is acceptable“.

UNISON’s also made the following statement; “UNISON has been leading these pay talks since December and we are close to a final position which we can put to NHS staff for consideration. However, the details in the article are incomplete, unconfirmed and inaccurate in part”.

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