From the TUC

The NHS is straining at the seams and pay pressure makes it harder

05 Jun 2014, By

The work that I do in the NHS is behind-the-scenes. We have difficulty recruiting all the staff we need to cover all the roles that are necessary. So when the government announces that NHS staff are not worth a pay rise, it makes it harder to convince people that they should stay in the NHS, let alone begin a new career in it.

In my workplace we’ve seen patient numbers increased, our working week increased, our workloads increased but staff numbers have stayed the same and my real-terms salary drop.

Staff simply can’t keep up with the extra demands on their time – our waiting times have increased from six months to 15 months and patients are suffering because of it.

It feels like staff morale is at its lowest for many years. The government says it can’t afford to pay for all staff to get a 1% increase yet they’ve spent £1.5bn on an unnecessary reorganisation.

But it’s not just staff morale that’s affected – many of my colleagues are really struggling to make ends meet each month. I’m hundreds of pounds worse off each month since this government came into power.

The government says that staff who receive their ‘incremental pay’ are getting a salary increase, but incremental pay is not a substitute for a pay rise. It recognises the training and experience that staff get as they progress in their careers – it is actually a way to stagger the proper value of a job role.

That’s why I’m supporting the day of action because I want NHS staff to be properly valued.

Follow the #NHSpay day of action at alltogetherforthenhs.org