- Advertisement -

RCN Nurses’ Rejection of UK Government’s Pay Offer

The United Kingdom government’s pay offer to the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) union has been rejected by its nurses, leading to a strike over the first May bank holiday. While the Unison union, which comprises some nurses and ambulance crews, has accepted the pay offer, the RCN’s 48-hour walkout from 20:00 BST on 30 April to 20:00 on 2 May will affect NHS nurses in various wards, including emergency departments, intensive care, and cancer care. The government has stated that this will be “hugely concerning” for patients.

- Advertisement -

Unison Union’s Acceptance of the Pay Offer

Unison’s vote on the pay offer was overwhelmingly in favour of the deal, leading to a 5% pay rise for 2023-24 and a one-off lump sum of at least £1,655 to top up the previous year’s salary. According to a government spokesperson, the Unison union’s decision “demonstrates that it is a fair and reasonable proposal that can bring this dispute to an end.”

RCN Nurses’ Decision to Strike and the Impact on Health Services

The result of the RCN vote on pay was close – 54% voted to reject the offer, while 46% voted to accept it. The RCN general secretary and chief executive, Pat Cullen, has stated that “What has been offered to date is simply not enough,” and until there is a significantly improved offer, RCN nurses will continue to strike. However, healthcare bosses are concerned that further strikes will impact already lengthy waiting lists for treatment, which Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has promised to reduce. The RCN has also stated that this new strike will mean that some critical care services, such as intensive care, will not be staffed on strike days, which is something that did not happen in previous strikes.

Other Unions Still Voting

Hundreds of thousands of NHS staff from other unions are still voting on the same pay deal over the next two weeks.

Scotland’s Nurses Accept Pay Offer

Nurses in Scotland have accepted a pay offer from the Scottish government that will result in a 6.5% increase from this month, on top of a 7.5% rise for 2022-23. Consequently, there has been no industrial action by nurses in Scotland.

Reballot of Members

The RCN has stated that it will now reballot its members in England to determine whether they want to continue taking industrial action after the strike in early May. Unite and the GMB will announce the result of their ballots on the same pay deal in two weeks’ time.

Health Workers’ Response to the Pay Offer

Clinical nurse specialist Harry Eccles voted against the pay offer, and he was pleased that other nurses did the same. According to him, the one-off sum offered by the government for 2022-23 was “going to pay off a few bills, and then we’re going to be in the same predicament.” He was also not impressed by the 5% pay increase for this year, pointing out that it is still way below inflation. Harry added that strike action is a last resort, and “the government is refusing to listen, to give us the respect and the time, and to even recognise that without staff there is no NHS.”

Other Recent Strikes Across the UK

There have been several other recent strikes across the UK, including those involving school teachers, railway workers, and passport office workers in recent months.


In conclusion, the RCN nurses’ rejection of the UK government’s pay offer has led to a strike on the first May bank holiday in England. The Unison union has accepted the offer, but the RCN nurses’ strike will affect NHS nurses in various wards, and the government is concerned about its impact on patients. While the RCN has stated that further strikes will occur until there is a significantly improved offer, healthcare bosses are worried about their impact on already lengthy waiting lists for treatment. The situation remains uncertain, with other unions still voting and the RCN planning to reballot its members in England.

- Advertisement -
Previous articleUbisoft’s XDefiant: A Comprehensive Review
Next articleShocking Scandal Exposed: Met Officers Dismissed Over Vile Messages – Click to Uncover the Untold Story!
Hi I'm Oliver Smith, I would say that I take great pride in my work as a journalist and strive to produce high-quality, impactful stories that make a difference. With more than eight years of experience under my belt, I am passionate about uncovering the truth and shining a light on issues that matter.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here