Dartford Labour Party are calling on the town’s MP Gareth Johnson to back a fair wage for nurses and NHS staff in Dartford by voting the scrap the cap on public sector pay.
A Labour motion to scrap the public sector pay cap of 1%, which has been in place since 2010, will be debated in parliament on Wednesday September 13th.
Labour’s leader on Dartford Council, Jonathon Hawkes said that Gareth Johnson should show he understands the concerns of people who work in the NHS and other vital public services in Dartford by voting to scrap the pay cap.
“After seven years of austerity, continuing the public sector pay cap is unfair and unjustified.
Gareth Johnson has a choice. On Wednesday, he can stand with nurses and NHS staff at Darent Valley Hospital and vote to scrap the cap, or he can toe the government line. A government line that has resulted in a 14% pay cut for nursing staff since 2010 and has seen nurses being forced to use food banks in order to survive.
That can’t be how the government should treat people who work tirelessly to care for our community. That’s why Labour would scrap the cap immediately and I believe there are many Conservatives who now agree with us. I hope they vote with their conscience on Wednesday. If parliament stands together and votes to scrap the cap, nurses and other public sector staff in Dartford can finally receive the pay rise they need and deserve.”
Darford Labour’s health spokesperson and former parliamentary candidate Dr Bachchu Kailash Kaini said the pay cap should be lifted as it was having an impact of local health services.
Under the Conservatives, more people are leaving nursing than joining. There is a shortage of 40,000 nurses in the UK and our own local CCG here in Dartford is experiencing challenges recruiting registered nurses. Registered nurse numbers are down for the first time since 2008 and the situation is going to be made worse as nursing applications are also down 23% in 2017 – since the government scraped bursaries for student nurses and replaced them with loans. Nurses deserve fair pay. That’s why we are demanding the government scrap the cap on pay and I urge Gareth Johnson to support Labour in the debate on Wednesday.
The Labour party has pledged to lift the 1 per cent pay cap, to reinstate bursaries for student nurses and to put £6bn a year into the NHS.