Nurses protest outside St George's Hospital in Tooting after Government refuses payrise

Some of the signs read:

Some of the signs read: "What is we can't afford to nurse?"

First published in News
Last updated
Wandsworth Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Chief reporter covering Wandsworth

A crowd of nurses gathered outside St George’s Hospital to protest against the Government’s refusal to increase NHS staff pay.

Two little babies joined in yesterday’s protest, which involved a crowd of nurses brandishing placards.

Wandsworth Guardian:

Francine Fox and Cynthia Davis

The event, organised by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), came after the coalition refused to uphold a one per cent pay increase for staff.

Wandsworth Guardian:

Mike Smith, a nurse and chairman of the RCN’s Outer South West London branch, attended the St George’s protest.

He said: “Nursing levels are getting to crisis point. Many are retiring early due to the relentless pressures and shrinking rewards. District nurses are like gold dust and with the drive towards community focused care is it any wonder our acute hospitals are constantly overflowing?

“London trusts spend £60m a year on securing empty NHS estate, enough to pay most London nurses the 1 per cent recommended by the independent pay review body but over ruled by millionaire health minister Jeremy Hunt. We are standing up for nurses today to ensure this four year pay freeze starts to thaw.”

There were simultaneous protests outside St Thomas’ Hospital, in Lambeth, and University Hospital, in Lewisham.

The RCN is the voice of nursing across the UK and promotes the interest of nurses and patients as well as helping shape healthcare policy.

A Department of Health spokesperson said: "NHS staff are our greatest asset. That's why at a time of severe funding restraint we have been clear that they should receive at least one per cent additional pay this year and next.

"We cannot afford a general pay rise on top of incremental pay increases of up to six per cent without risking frontline jobs and safe staffing levels.

"We are disappointed that the unions rejected our offer to discuss any alternative proposals on pay, within an available budget of nearly £1 billion. However, our door remains open if they wish to reconsider their position."

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

6:18pm Sat 7 Jun 14

From beer to uncertainty says...

Tory buffoons really enjoy seeing these types of protests. They just laugh and carry on.
The cretins in government have a privatisation fetish. Desperate to flog everything to their old school chums at a loss...then taking up directorships and consultancies when booted out of office.
Tory buffoons really enjoy seeing these types of protests. They just laugh and carry on. The cretins in government have a privatisation fetish. Desperate to flog everything to their old school chums at a loss...then taking up directorships and consultancies when booted out of office. From beer to uncertainty
  • Score: 3

7:29pm Sat 7 Jun 14

Pippa Maslin says...

As a KOSHH (Keep Our St Helier Hospital) campaigner and a member of the NHAP (National Health Action Party), I am in full support of the nurses who decided to protest. Go for it, folks!
As a KOSHH (Keep Our St Helier Hospital) campaigner and a member of the NHAP (National Health Action Party), I am in full support of the nurses who decided to protest. Go for it, folks! Pippa Maslin
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree