In a Royal College of Midwives ballot, more than 80% of midwives in England voted in favour of industrial action and a four-hour ‘stoppage’ will take place on 13th October.
The RCM opted to stage a ballot after health secretary Jeremy Hunt rejected the Independent NHS Pay Review Body’s recommendation of a 1% pay rise for all NHS staff.
“NHS staff are our greatest asset,” said a Department of Health spokesperson. “We’ve increased the NHS budget to pay for thousands more clinical staff since 2010, including more than 1,700 more midwives since May 2010.
“We want to protect these increases and cannot afford a pay rise on top of increments – which disproportionately reward the highest earners – without risking frontline jobs.”
The RCM has revealed that 10,536 midwives cast a vote in the ballot, with 8,464 of them voting in favour of strike action.