Further strike action after Scottish nurses overwhelmingly reject latest government pay offer

82% of RCN members voted to reject the Scottish Government's latest offer. Credit: ITV News

Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland members are planning to strike after members overwhelmingly rejected the latest NHS pay offer.

82% of members turned down the revised offer in the consultative ballot which closed on Monday.

The pay offer had been for an average increase of 7.5% - a deal the Scottish Government have said previously was unprecedented at a time of extraordinary financial challenge, and would ensure NHS workers in Scotland remain the best paid in the UK.

Strike action dates will be announced early in 2023.

Julie Lamberth, RCN Scotland Board Chair, said: "It was the right thing to ask our members whether to accept or reject this offer. It directly affects their lives and each eligible member needed to be given the chance to have their say.

"And the result could not be clearer – we have forcefully rejected what the Scottish government said is its ‘best and final’ offer.

"Make no mistake - we do not want to go on strike. Years of being undervalued and understaffed have left us feeling we have no alternative because enough is enough.

"The ball is in Scottish government’s court if strike action is going to be avoided. Members can be reassured that planning for strike action will be thorough.

"The safety of patients and of our members are paramount and we will be working hard to ensure that while any strike action is disruptive, it does not put patients or our members at risk."

Cabinet secretary for Health and Social Care Humza Yousef tweeted about his disappointment over the ballot result.

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