Scottish Budget: Royal College of Nursing survey shows need for pay rise say Greens

A survey of nurses, showing that three quarters of those questioned say they feel financially worse off than they did five years ago, puts pressure on the finance secretary to announce an above inflation pay rise on Thursday says a Green MSP.

The survey by RCN Scotland also reveals that more than a third of nursing staff say they are looking for a new job, a situation Alison Johnstone MSP says will only get worse if Derek Mackay does not announce a "fair pay settlement” as part of the draft Scottish Budget this week.

Alison Johnstone MSP, the Scottish Greens’ health spokesperson, said:

“Public sector workers play a vital role in our communities, from nursing and social care staff to teachers and police officers and the real-terms pay cuts they've endured must end. The findings of this report should confirm what ministers should already know, that problems like recruitment, retention and staff morale will become even worse if we don’t ensure a fair pay settlement, above inflation, to nurses and other dedicated professionals working in the NHS.

“These real-terms pay cuts in recent years are clearly having a negative impact. The finance secretary must listen to groups representing frontline workers such as RCN Scotland and back the basic principle that a pay rise for our public services is due and can be funded, not from cuts elsewhere, but from fairer taxation that protects low earners.”