The nursing union of england, wales and northern ireland officially confirmed this Friday the two days of strike that will take place on December 15 and 20 in claim for salary improvementsin what will be the largest measure of force in the history of the public health system of United Kingdomknown as nhs.
Chukwudubem Ifeajuna, a nurse from the south of England, loves his job, saying it is necessary for the well-being of staff and patients alike. In recent months, he has seen members of his team go to work in supermarkets, where there is less stress and better pay, while he has had to cut costs.
“I have some staff members who are using food banks right now. I have had to cut back on a lot of things with the kids that I can’t afford to provide for them due to the high cost of living. So it’s very, very difficult, for everyone, not just me,” he told Reuters.
“We are on strike because we deserve to be paid better. We haven’t had a decent salary for over a decade,” he added. The two days of unemployment that will take place in December come after the British government refused to comply with demands for wage increases of 5% above inflation, reported Reuters.
“Nurses are fed up with being taken for granted, with low pay and insecure staffing levels, with not being able to give our patients the care they deserve,” she explained. Pat Cullen, Secretary General of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).
For his part, he british health secretary, Steve Barclaysaid the nurses’ demands would amount to a 19.2% pay rise at a cost of £10bn a year, and that the government would grant them raises of at least £1,400 each this year.