The NHS Pay Review Body has announced that NHS Midwives will receive a 1% pay rise in 2017/18, following ministers accepting the proposal.
This is the seventh year in a row the Government has restrained pay for NHS workers, which does not meet increasing inflation rates in the UK.
Commenting on the pay announce, Director for Policy, Employment Relations and Communications at the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), Jon Skewes, said: “It is extremely disappointing that the Government is continuing with its disastrous policy of pay restraint for a seventh year.
While we welcome that both the Scottish and Welsh Governments will give a slightly higher award to lower paid staff we want to see an inflationary increase given to all staff.
As a result of below-inflation increases for the past seven years midwives have seen their pay drop in value by over £6,000 since 2010; it is unsustainable for this to continue.”
Unions across the UK have voiced their concerns that a shortage of staff across the NHS could become a bigger crisis if wages don’t keep up with the cost of food and transport costs.
“When almost every professional group in the NHS has a shortage of staff, as midwifery does, the Government need to intervene now to retain much-needed staff before it is too late. The decision by the Government to continue with pay restraint in the NHS is reckless in the extreme given the current shortage of staff and the two staffing crises that are looming on the horizon, namely the introduction of tuition of fees for new midwifery and nursing students and the uncertain future of staff from other EU countries.
The Government needs to take notice of the evidence that the RCM, and other NHS trade unions put to the NHS Pay Review Body and show they understand the seriousness of the staffing crisis in the NHS and work to retain existing NHS staff in the service,” Jon Skewes added.
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