Polegate MP and nurse, Maria Caulfield, has hosted a Parliamentary event alongside the Royal College of Nursing to gain Parliamentary support to scrap the cap.
Since 2010, NHS nursing staff have experienced a 14 per cent real-terms pay cut as a result of Government policy on pay in the public sector- leaving pay packets £3,000 worse off each year. Frontline RCN members told the MP that 455 nurses are affected by the pay cap in her constituency of Lewes.
Nurses are working in an increasingly pressurised and understaffed health and care system. The nursing regulator recently revealed that the profession is shrinking, with more nurses leaving the profession than joining it and 40,000 nursing vacancies in England alone. Separate RCN analysis shows that nurses with more than 10 years’ experience are leaving the NHS at twice the rate they were three years ago.
Maria Caulfield MP said, “Having worked as a full time nurse under the pay freeze and pay cap until my first election in 2015, I know just how hard these measures can hit nurses.
“This is why I chose to support the RCN by hosting them in Parliament, allowing them to lobby MPs coinciding with their march outside Parliament. I will continue to lobby the Government to scrap the cap on behalf of the 455 nurses in Lewes and all those around the country. I am pleased that 71 MPs from across the Commons were able to join us for the event.”
Janet Davies, Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing said, “This summer, nurses have shown the Government that they have had enough of poor pay. They are struggling to keep up with the cost of living and there are reports it pays better to work in supermarkets than care for the most vulnerable.
“It’s a false economy to keep nurses pay down, short staffing is threating the safety of our patients. That’s why we welcome the support of MPs who are championing nursing and share our belief that the 1% pay cap should be scrapped. Nurses will not tolerate having their pay squeezed any further. The Government must put party politics aside and lift the cap.”