Nurses’ union in Scotland backs industrial action

U.K.

Members of the RCN nursing union in Scotland have voted overwhelmingly to reject a 5% pay offer and a majority has given support to strike action. The union in England and Wales will launch a ballot next month with a similar recommendation from the leadership to reject the pay offer and support industrial action. This opens up the prospect of the first ever UK industrial action by the union. In England and Wales the union’s main pay demand was for a rise of 5% above inflation (currently 11.8%), to combat years of wage stagnation and the cost-of-living crisis. The government has announced an increase of £1,400 (€1,655) which is around 4% for workers in the middle pay bands. Nursing staff in Northern Ireland are still awaiting a formal pay announcement. Unite is also balloting its 100,000 members in the health service in England and Wales and is recommending to reject the pay offer.

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