Nurses are getting a fairly modest pay award this year and they are not happy about it. As far as I can see the low pay award is based on two fairly simple factors, first the Government is running out of money. They have squandered so much public money they are now having to look at cost savings across the board.
Secondly the duel effects of supply and demand are at work. There is currently a surplus of nurses. I find it hard to believe but there are too many nurses chasing too few jobs, the recent ward closures and redundancies have made the situation worse.
The Labour spin machine talks about the role of pay restraint in fighting inflation but this is rather blown out of the water when you see the 8% -10% pay raises for junior members of the armed forces.
Clearly I am immensely happy to see junior ranks getting a decent pay award but be under no illusion, this isn’t a thank you, it is just a means to stop the dramatic outflowing of young soldiers, marines, sailors and airmen.
Both nurses and service people do an important job and placing a financial figure against the importance of their jobs is hard. Labour have chosen not to and have decided to let market forces set the level, fair enough. But I wish that they had the balls to be honest about it.