Months overdue and still not enough says RCM on NHS pay award

on 21 July 2021 Midwives NHS Maternity Services Midwifery Workforce Midwife Shortage NHS Pay Review Body Pay and Agenda For Change NHS Staff NHS England Pay NHS Unions RCM RCM Member

The RCM has responded to the Government’s pay award to NHS staff in England of a 3% pay rise with dismay and disappointment.

The RCM has warned that this is not enough to counteract vacancies and prevent staff from leaving the profession for good, particularly after their efforts during the pandemic.

Responding RCM’s Executive Director for External Affairs and one of the NHS Unions chief negotiators, Jon Skewes said:

“At least the limbo our hardworking members were left in by our shambolic Government has ended. We are disappointed that maternity staff in England will not receive a headline increase of 4% like their colleagues in Scotland. Through our evidence to the Pay Review Body, we managed to secure more than the 1% proposed by the Government, but again this is not backdated far enough or on par with the pay award in Scotland.”

The Government has already admitted that the NHS in England is short of over 2,000 midwives that are desperately needed to improve safety in maternity services. What no one wants to see is further staff shortages, but midwives and maternity staff have had enough, they feel undervalued, and some have already voted with their feet and a pay award of 3% may not be enough to retain them.

Jon added:

“The RCM will now review this report in detail and the RCM Board will meet to determine our position and next steps for our Deliver a Decent Deal campaign. We will also be talking with our members. Most importantly this pay award now needs to be paid to our members and all NHS staff as quickly as possible. They have waited long enough and any more delays will further erode morale and impact on recruitment and retention. We will also be seeking reassurances from the Government any pay increase will be funded centrally, and that trusts will not be expected to use other budgets to pay for it.”



To contact the RCM Media Office call 020 7312 3456, or email [email protected]


Notes to Editors:



 The RCM is the only trade union and professional association dedicated to serving midwifery and the whole midwifery team. We provide workplace advice and support, professional and clinical guidance, and information, and learning opportunities with our broad range of events, conferences, and online resources. For more information visit the RCM website.