Responding to the High Court decision on strike action, RCN General Secretary and Chief Executive, Pat Cullen, said:
“The full weight of government gave ministers this victory over nursing staff. It is the darkest day of this dispute so far - the government taking its own nurses through the courts in bitterness at their simple expectation of a better pay deal.
“Nursing staff will be angered but not crushed by today’s interim order. It may even make them more determined to vote in next month’s reballot for a further six months of action. Nobody wants strikes until Christmas - we should be in the negotiating room, not the courtroom today.
“Our strike will now finish at midnight on the Monday as we have ensured safe and legal action at all times.
“The government has won their legal battle today. But what this has led to is they have lost nursing and they’ve lost the public. They’ve taken the most trusted profession through the courts, by the least trusted people.”