Socialist Worker

Health workers vote on barely revised pay offer

Issue No. 2066

Health workers in Unison, the biggest NHS union, are voting on whether to accept a revised offer from the government – a revision so small that the Nursing Times magazine suggested that it might just buy a nurse a pair of shorts on eBay!

Unison has issued advice to accompany the ballot that tells members “this is the best offer that can be achieved through negotiation”.

The letter goes on to explain the offer in such a way as to recommend it.

This is despite Unison’s health conference voting for industrial action if the government failed to come up with an above inflation offer.

The battle is on to ensure a rejection of the proposal.

Activists are organising ward and office meetings which expose the cynical way the headline figure of “an extra £400 for the lowest paid” has been reached.

They show how, even for workers on pay points 1-7, the offer is in fact in real terms a pay cut.

Union branches which have voted to reject the deal should continue to campaign on the issue, despite the insistence of Unison’s leadership that to do so is a contravention the “democracy in Unison” rules.

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