Demands to ‘scrap the pay cap’ as inflation at four-year high

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has called for the pay cap on nurses’ wages to be lifted after it was revealed inflation has hit a four-year high and continues to outpace pay growth.Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed inflation running at 2.9% in May this year, as pay growth slowed to 1.7%.

Nurses’ pay rises have been capped at 1% for the past seven years, leading to several nursing groups considering or announcing protest action.

A years-long policy of capping pay rises for nursing staff at 1% annually was expected to continue until 2020, but the Conservative minister appeared to make concessions while speaking at NHS Confed17 in Liverpool on 15 June.

Mr Hunt told his audience of NHS senior managers he had a ‘great deal of sympathy’ with nurses, who he believed do ‘an absolutely brilliant job’. Following announcements from the NHS across the UK that the cap would continue, the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) decided in a ballot among its members to engage in a ‘summer of protest action’ in opposition.

‘I have had a very constructive letter from [RCN chief executive] Janet Davies. I will be meeting with her and will make sure the conversation is reflected back to the chancellor before we make that decision.

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