This weekend we protested outside Sajid Javid’s office in Bromsgrove after he failed to meet them to discuss the shambolic 3% pay offer.
Nurses United members organised the event which was attended by RCN West Midlands, Acorn Birmingham and GMB West Midlands, on the 11th of September to highlight the impact of the Government’s real-terms pay cut on patient safety.
And if you needed to look any further at the impact that real organising can have upon our lives, you need to look no further than the recent ballots by major health unions on the 3% pay award. During this time Nurses United members have been canvassing in workplaces and holding conversations with our colleagues asking them to vote for our patient’s safety – with the aim to take action if the consultative ballots are successful.
The results from the RCNs consultative ballot are out, with the overwhelming majority of members voting to reject the pay offer.
This would never have happened without the work of grassroots nurses across the past 3 years who have made sure that so many nurses were willing to reject yet another real-terms pay cut and increase the turnout by over a third.
Heart failure nurse specialist and one of our organisers, Leah Sparks said,
“I was keen to work with Nurses United on the ‘Three Strikes We’re Out’ event as there have been too many times when we’ve been let down by this government and enough is enough. We asked Mr Javid to meet with us because we want him to understand the constant pressures we are under and the harsh reality of the situation our NHS is in. As health secretary, he needs to know what is happening, otherwise how can he honestly believe he is doing his job properly.
Unsafe staffing levels and years of underfunding are not only driving experienced skilful nurses out of the profession, but also putting our patients at risk and causing the quality of care we provide to fall.
We cannot continue to work in such unsafe conditions and we must speak up and take action to protect our patients.”