Nurses strike because patients are dying - RCN union boss Pat Cullen

2 weeks ago 37

Pat CullenImage source, PA Media

By Nick Triggle

Health correspondent

Patients are not dying due to the fact that nurses are striking, nurses are striking due to the fact that patients are dying, the caput of the Royal College of Nursing says.

Speaking astatine the union's yearly conference, Pat Cullen praised nurses' protests implicit wage and harmless staffing.

She told delegates she has been invited to person much discussions with Health Secretary Steve Barclay.

The authorities confirmed the gathering but said a woody precocious reached with different unions would "not beryllium reopened".

It is not wide yet what that gathering volition cover, but authorities sources pointed retired the wage woody successful England - a 5% emergence this twelvemonth and a one-off lump sum worthy astatine slightest £1,655 to boost past year's 4% wage emergence - was successful the process being implemented, with the archetypal payments expected successful the wage packets of NHS workers successful June.

The woody does not screen doctors and dentists who are connected abstracted contracts.

Ms Cullen's code came aft her members rejected the wage connection from government, contempt her recommending that they judge the deal.

Nurses rejected it by 54% to 46%.

It has enactment the RCN person successful a hard position, but she was speedy to praise her members, calling them an "inspiration".

She urged them to ballot successful the forthcoming ballot connected aboriginal concern action, which opens adjacent week and volition springiness results successful June.

The union's erstwhile mandate for onslaught action, which has seen them instrumentality portion successful 8 days of walkouts successful England truthful acold successful this dispute, expired earlier this month.

She said the wage disputes successful Wales and Northern Ireland were not implicit either, since nary deals person yet been agreed connected pay.

She told members astatine the league successful Brighton: "Patients are not dying due to the fact that nurses are striking. Nurses are striking due to the fact that patients are dying. It is arsenic wide arsenic that."

She said the NHS was "sailing adjacent to the wind", with unit shortages threatening diligent safety.

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