Thousands are fed up with “feeling tired” health care work and have voted overwhelmingly to challenge the government’s 3 percent wage hike.
Union Unison said a consultation showed that four out of five of its members were opposed to the wage hike. It also warned that many health workers are likely to leave and leave the industry elsewhere for less stressful, better-paying jobs.
It said the healthcare staff, which includes nurses, healthcare assistants, ambulance workers and hospital porters, were feeling “so disheartened” that they felt like leaving them “overnight”.
The Department of Health said the increase would be an additional £1,000 per year for the average nurse in England, while many porters and cleaners would receive around £540.
But Unison has called for a wage increase of at least £2,000, claiming inflation has already wiped out the wage increases NHS workers receive.
The union is expected to launch a ballot paper to see how many of its members would be willing to take sustained and comprehensive industrial action against the government’s decision.
Unison’s head of health Sarah Gorton said: “The fact that so many health workers say they are willing to stand together to challenge the 3% should make the government think twice.
“Many people feel frustrated that they keep telling us they feel like leaving overnight.
“Boris Johnson said he would give the NHS what it needed. Instead, rising costs meant that staff conditions would not improve, adding to low morale, irritation and disillusionment.
“Hospital admissions are on the rise, the backlog looks overwhelming, and the risk of the worst winter ever looms large.
“Unison provided strong evidence to the wage review body and the government that a minimum £2,000 increase would be enough to persuade people to stay. But both decided to ignore it.”
The Royal College of Nursing has also urged the government to reconsider the salary award after its members voted in a ballot that it was unacceptable. Other unions are also voting for health workers over wages.
Recent research from the House of Commons Library suggests that low-wage NHS workers will face pay cuts next year with the end of universal credit uplift and the new health and care tax, which will effectively cut their 3 per cent pay increase. will erase from
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /