UNISON launch campaign to scrap the 1% pay rise cap on NHS workers

Health boards are falling short of the target of having 90 per cent of GP practices offering online appointment booking
Health boards are falling short of the target of having 90 per cent of GP practices offering online appointment booking

NHS union UNISON have launched a summer of campaign activity calling on the Scottish government to ‘scrap the cap’ on NHS pay, which will include UNISON members lobbying Scottish Government ministers on pay as they carry out their annual round of NHS board reviews.

UNISON represents almost 60,000 workers across NHS Scotland and have been extremely critical of government and the Independent Pay Review Body after a series of below inflation pay rises were awarded to NHS workers across the UK.

Tom Waterson, chair of UNISON Scotland’s health committee said: “We cannot have another year where the UK Governments infatuation with austerity leads to another real terms cut in the pay of NHS workers. In recent months we’ve seen time and time again politicians praise the work of our loyal and dedicated NHS workforce but refuse to deliver a fair deal on pay.”

UNISON welcome the Scottish government’s recognition that the pay cap is hurting NHS workers.

However Tom Waterson said, “UNISON members welcome the recognition that the pay cap cannot continue. It is now time for that recognition to be turned into positive action. UNISON branches and members across Scotland will be using the next few months to secure Scottish pay bargaining and a fair deal for NHS workers.”

UNISON has welcomed the offer from the Scottish government to enter into separate pay bargaining in Scotland.

Tom Waterson said: “The Pay Review Body lost any pretence of independence when it awarded a below inflation 1% pay rise to NHS workers. The Scottish government’s suggestion that we dump the Pay Review Body and deal with pay in Scotland by negotiation is supported by UNISON and we will be using our influence to secure a conclusion which sees the Pay Review Body consigned to the bin as we campaign to ‘Scrap the Cap’.”

The union’s summer campaign will coincide with the annual review process which takes place in all NHS Scotland health boards. UNISON vows to be seen and heard at each and every event.

Matt McLaughlin, UNISON’s head of health for Scotland said, “UNISON is the only union in the NHS with the grass roots organisation and resources to organise and sustain a campaign like this. Across Scotland, UNISON activists and members will be seen and heard as we demand that the government ‘scrap the cap’”