A fresh wave of NHS strikes has been announced for the New Year in relation to nursing salaries.
Healthcare staff from a number of different unions will strike for 12 hours on 29 January and again on 25 February.
Between these dates, staff will continue to work-to-rule meaning that they will only work contracted hours, take all breaks and do no unpaid overtime.
Christina McAnea, head of healthcare at Unison said: “Our members’ pay has been frozen or held down for the past five years and there is no end in sight. On average, they have lost around 10% in the value of their pay over the life of this parliament. We now have no option but to escalate the plan for longer strikes.”
This is the latest in a series of strike actions concerning the 1% pay raise recommended for NHS nursing staff. Following the last strike in November, Ministers awarded a 1% pay increase to frontline staff that didn’t have automatic progression-in-the-job rises.
A spokesperson from the Department of Health said the news of forthcoming strikes was disappointing.
“NHS staff are our greatest asset and we want to make the current pay system fairer – which is why we have put forward proposals that would guarantee all staff would get at least a 1% pay rise this year and next, but these have been rejected by the unions.
“We have taken tough decisions to increase the NHS budget, but we can’t afford a consolidated pay rise in addition to increments without risking 10,000 frontline jobs.”