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Royal College of Nursing to ballot Manx Care members on strike action

31 May 2023

The Isle of Man’s largest nursing trade union is balloting its members on whether they would be willing to breach their employment contracts and go on strike after the latest pay offer from Manx Care was rejected.

Photo shows white hand posting envelope into red post box

A recent survey saw 68% of eligible RCN members vote with 85% rejecting the offer. It had been put to members following months of talks with Manx Care. 

The new offer would have seen staff receive an additional unconsolidated lump sum of £300 in addition to the 4% consolidated pay award (already paid) for 2021/22 and, for 2022/23, staff were being offered a further 2% consolidated pay increase, in addition to the 4% pay award, which was applied to October 2022 salaries.  

The RCN’s elected Council has now agreed that a statutory ballot asking members working for Manx Care if they would be willing to take strike action will take place from 1 June and closes at 23.59 on Wednesday 21 June 2023.

The ballot, which will arrive in the post in line with statutory legislation which means ballots of this kind have to be done on paper, asks members to select a yes or no answer.  The ballot is being conducted by independent scrutineers, Civica. RCN members who are eligible to vote, those with Manx Care contracts, are being asked to return their voting papers in the pre-paid envelopes provided as soon as possible, in advance of the closing date.  Any votes that are received after 21 June cannot be counted. 

However, on Friday (26 May) Manx Care made a further formal offer which would see staff receive a £1,000 consolidated payment for the pay year 2022/2023 and is in addition to the 6% already awarded.  

A paper will go to the North West regional board on Thursday (1 June) and to TU committee thereafter to agree the next steps formally. Members have been informed that the RCN has received a formal offer and we will give them further information in the coming weeks. 

The industrial action ballot will still go ahead as planned as we do not want any further delays for action should members vote to reject this latest offer.

Estephanie Dunn, Regional Director for the RCN in the North West, said: “Our members have decided that enough is enough. The results of the survey have given the RCN a clear mandate to act on their behalf.  This is about fair pay for a profession that is so valuable to the community on the Isle of Man, protecting the health and care sector on the island, and ensuring patients get the care they deserve.

“After years of cuts to nursing pay and using workforce numbers as a mechanism to balance budgets, nursing has decided that the time has come to make a stand and demand fairer pay.

“Years of negotiation have not been successful, and this is the last option open to us. Things have to change now. Promises of a better future have never materialised, and our members continue to struggle to make ends meet while working in intolerable conditions.”

Page last updated - 30/10/2023