NHS and care workers in Mansfield to protest after not being included in public sector pay rise

Care workers and NHS staff in Mansfield will take part in a protest this weekend after the government failed to include them in its recent pay rise announcement.

Wednesday, 5th August 2020, 6:00 am

The decision for the protest comes after some NHS staff and health workers all over the country were missed off of the public sector pay rise announcement in July.

While public sector workers including teachers, doctors and dentists will receive an above-inflation pay rise, some health care staff including nurses, midwives and hospital cleaners will not benefit as they are already part of the Agenda for Change (AfC) – a separate three-year pay deal which ends next April.

Healthcare workers will have a socially distanced gathering outside the town hall on Market Street this Saturday (August 8) at 11am, to vent their frustration at the government for its unfair treatment.

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Jon Dale, 63, from the UniteNottinghamshire Health Branch.
Jon Dale, 63, from the UniteNottinghamshire Health Branch.

Nearly 900,000 workers across the country will benefit from the pay rises including doctors, teachers, police officers and more who work in the public sector but some NHS workers who have battled through the Covid-19 pandemic will miss out.

Jon Dale, secretary of Unite the union Nottinghamshire Health branch, said: “We decided to call a protest in Mansfield as many local people work in the NHS and care services.

“NHS and care workers have worked incredibly hard in very stressful conditions during the COVID crisis.

“We're calling for an end to low pay for all workers and to put patients and service users before profits.”

The rally will feature banners by participants and healthcare workers will be invited to speak into a megaphone and get their points across.

It will be the beginning of a continuing campaign from health workers and care workers trade unions to demand that the austerity long before Covid-19 is put right.

Mansfield nurse, Tom Hunt, said: “Government ministers joined in weekly claps for health and care workers but clapping doesn't pay bills.

“Nurses, NHS workers and care workers are fed up with being called heroes one minute but then told there's no money to end the scandalous level of low pay.”

Sheila Marriott, regional director of the Royal College of Nursing for the East Midlands, said: “While the protests taking place across the country are not our events, we support our members who want to respectfully and safely show the strong voice of nursing across the UK.

“As health professionals, nursing staff will be well aware of COVID-19 restrictions and the importance of them.

“The Government must look at these professionals, hear their arguments and accept there's no alternative to a significant pay rise this year - waiting until 2021 is unacceptable."