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RCM secures pay deal for members in Wales

20 November, 2014

RCM secures pay deal for members in Wales

Today the Welsh government and unions including the Royal College of Midwives have reached an agreement on a pay deal for NHS staff in Wales.

The figures come ahead of another week of industrial action next week starting with strike action by midwives and other NHS staff on Monday, 24th November.

During the week of strike and further industrial action by NHS staff in early October, RCM members claimed for overtime they would normally work for free.

They recorded their overtime on timecards provided by the RCM. With almost 500 responses and more still coming in, the results show that midwives worked an average of three hours overtime during that week.

Just thirteen hours overtime – or just over four weeks for most midwives - is equivalent to each midwife receiving the very modest one per cent pay award recommended by the NHS Pay Review Body. This recommendation was rejected by the Government and NHS employers.

Cathy Warwick, chief executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said: “This is an assault on the NHS pay system and on the independence and integrity of the Review Body. There is a lot of smoke and mirrors from the Government on this, trying to confuse the issue and confuse the public. The upshot is that in 2016 many of our members will be on the same pay as they were in 2016. This is not right or fair.

Cathy Warwick added: “I am asked how a one per cent award is affordable. My response is that it is a question of priorities, of how this country wants to spend its money. If there is not enough money for the NHS, that is because the Government has decided to limit its budget. It is a political decision rather than an economic one.

“The Government and NHS employers claim that this pay award is being denied in order to save jobs in the NHS. Yet the cost of the rise, £300 million according to the Government – is far less than the £3 billion that the Government wasted on a costly and unnecessary reorganisation of the NHS. If there really is no money to pay midwives and other NHS staff a one per cent pay rise, how come top NHS managers have been given £166 million in bonuses? And how is it that there is money to give MPs a 10 per cent pay rise? “

“We want a settlement to this dispute as do other health unions. It is affordable and it is needed because investing in NHS staff is ultimately an investment in better care.”

The overtime statistics follow a poll of public opinion by ComRes for the RCM on the one per cent pay award released last week. This showed that the public remains overwhelmingly in favour of the one per cent increase for NHS staff.  

For more information on the poll see https://www.rcm.org.uk/news-views-and-analysis/news/poll-shows-high-support-for-1-pay-award-for-nhs-staff.

For further information please contact the RCM Press Office on 020 7312 3456, pressofficer@rcm.org.uk


Notes to editors

The Royal College of Midwives is the voice of midwifery. We are the UK’s only trade union and professional organisation led by midwives for midwives. The vast majority of the midwifery profession are our members. The RCM promotes midwifery, quality maternity services and professional standards. We support and represent our members individually and collectively in all four UK countries.  We influence on behalf of our members and for the interests of the women and families for which they care.  For more information visit the RCM website at https://www.rcm.org.uk/.


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