Health Secretary Matt Hancock has defended the decision to only give NHS nurses a 1% raise this year, calling the country’s finances “tight”.
Nurses across the country were upset after the government offered to raise their wages by just 1% this year, despite playing a key role in protecting the country from the coronavirus pandemic.
The situation has made some so angry that the nurses unions are considering industrial action in protest.
Mr Hancock faced a question from a nurse during today’s press conference (March 5) asking how the government could hope to fight the pandemic without the assistance of nurses.
In response, Mr. Hancock said that the country’s finances were tight and that he learned respect for the working world from his grandmother, who worked as a nurse as a child.
The Minister of Health said: “It is an incredibly important point that we need more nurses – not just the nurses we have now – and we have a clear manifesto commitment to 50,000 more nurses in the NHS, and I am delighted that it is There are more than 10,000 other nurses who have joined the NHS in the past 12 months, and the number of requests for nursing has increased by 34%, or more than a third.
“And of course, nurses have seen a 12% increase in salaries over the past three years.
“I do not bow to anyone in my admiration for nurses. In fact, I learned this on the knee of my grandmother, who was a nurse and worked nights at the Pilgrim Hospital in Boston.
“The challenge is that the nation’s finances are tight and while everyone else is on a wage freeze, we can propose a 1% pay increase for nurses.
“I appreciate that this reflects the difficult financial circumstances of the country. I would tell any nurse who watches and anyone who works so hard that we got through this pandemic in an incredible way, and I hope we did can do it. ” continue to do so to care for patients and support our NHS and to welcome many, many more nurses to the NHS in the years to come. “
The low wage increase has angered nurses so much that the Royal College of Nursing has put together a £ 35 million fund to compensate nurses if they go on strike after the low wage offer.
The public is also encouraged to participate in a “slow clap” for nurses. The mass gossip is organized to protest the wage increase and to mock previous government gossip about the NHS workers campaign.