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Sep
2016
Friday 30th
posted by Will Stone in Britain

NHS workers will be paid less than the minimum wage in five years unless the government injects hundreds of millions of pounds into the health service, unions have warned.
In their annual submission to the NHS pay review body published today, the 13 health unions say the government will breach its own minimum wage laws if it does not put £280 million into the service.
GMB, Unison and Unite argue that the pay crisis has come about because for years NHS staff pay has failed to keep up with inflation.
They say the lowest paid staff including hospital porters, cleaners and healthcare assistants will be paid less than the minimum wage by 2021.
The government has been accused of exacerbating the problem by insisting on a 1 per cent pay cap across the NHS.
Health unions are calling on the Department of Health to comply with the minimum wage by boosting the pay of low-paid staff, not by taking money from the 1 per cent pay “pot” for the rest of the NHS workforce.
As plans stand, everyone earning above £17,000 would have their 1 per cent rise docked to fund the government’s minimum wage pay promise.
Instead ministers must focus on injecting the additional money for the lowest earners and then deliver annual across-the-board pay rises for everyone, says the unions’ submission.
NHS trade unions chairwoman Christina McAnea said: “Capping NHS pay at such low levels is giving hospital trusts across the country a huge headache as they struggle to hold on to experienced staff, who can earn much more working for agencies.
“Limits on NHS pay are also deterring many people from taking up careers in the health service.
“The government must come up with the cash to increase the pay bands of the lowest paid or it will be breaking its own wage laws.
“If the NHS is to continue delivering the best possible care for patients, its workforce must feel valued and motivated — and that has to start with fair pay.”
The unions, which also include the royal colleges of midwives and nursing, are also calling for a return to national pay scales so all health workers receive the same wage rates.
The government had not commented by the time of going to press.
willstone@peoples-press.com




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